Course Type

Attachment & Psychopathology: the development, prevention and treatment of psychological disorder (A&P)

Duration: 8 days


Delivered over eight 3-hour webinars this course focuses on the development, prevention and treatment of psychological disorder. It weaves together theory, human development, assessment, case examples and treatment applications to reframe maladaptive behaviour as adaptive strategies for self-protection. The course focuses on development from infancy to adulthood, emphasising the process of adaptation and developmental pathways that carry risk for psychopathology.

The model used is the Dynamic-Maturational Model (DMM) of Attachment and Adaptation, developed by Dr. Patricia M. Crittenden. The DMM is relevant to individuals who are at risk, who have been exposed to danger, who display disturbed or maladaptive behaviour, or who are diagnosed as having a psychiatric disorder. A particular emphasis is cultural influences on attachment.

Learning outcomes

New skills:

  • Perceiving discrepant behaviour: seeing commonly overlooked clues to trouble
  • Identifying false-positive affect: uncovering hidden problems in their early stages
  • Differentiating symptoms and self-protective strategies: specifying how symptoms function
  • Functional formulation: Moving beyond diagnoses to understanding behaviour

Treatment planning – choosing treatment strategies to:

  • Increase efficiency
  • Lower cost
  • Reduce risk of iatrogenic harm

Take-away Tools:

  • Level of family functioning scale
  • Gradient of intervention scale
  • Downloadable materials
  • Daily text of slides (with registration only)
  • Bibliography of numerous published papers

Who should attend?

The course is for professionals from a range of disciplines who work with adults, children and families where insecure attachment and / or unresolved trauma and loss may be a significant factor affecting family members’ safety, health, and well-being. This includes professionals working within mental health, social work, criminal justice, the voluntary / charitable sector, and related fields.

A solid understanding of attachment theory is beneficial before attending the course.

This course is also a prerequisite for people who intend to take courses in DMM assessments such as the Adult Attachment Interview (AA).


Patricia Crittenden

Patricia M. Crittenden, PhD is a developmental psychopathologist with many years’ experience as an academic and practitioner in child maltreatment, attachment theory and family therapy. She was taught by Mary Ainsworth and was on the Faculties of Psychology at the Universities of Virginia and Miami. She held visiting positions at the Universities of Helsinki and Bologna, the Clark Institute of Psychiatry (Canada), San Diego State University (USA) and Edith Cowan University (Australia). She developed the Dynamic-Maturational Model (DMM) of Attachment and Adaptation and is one of the founders of the International Association for the Study of Attachment (IASA). In 2004, she received a Career  Achievement Award from the European Family Therapy Association. She has published more than 150 scientific papers and several books

Andrea Landini Andrea Landini M.D. is a child and adolescent psychiatrist. He received his medical training at the University of Modena and trained as both a cognitive-constructivist psychotherapist and a family therapist. His clinical practice includes psychotherapy with adults and adolescents, as well as work with parents and supervision of residential staff. He is on the visiting faculties of several Italian schools of cognitive and family systems psychotherapy. He is implementing the IASA Family Attachment Court Protocol in the Milan courts. For two decades, he collaborated with Crittenden in the development of the Dynamic-Maturational Model, translating four books, co-authoring many research articles, and publishing numerous chapters on using the DMM to guide treatment. He has participated in numerous research projects and is an author on many books and articles resulting from them.

Clark Baim Clark Baim, PhD. is a psychotherapist (UKCP, BPA), clinical supervisor, group leader and organisational consultant with more than 25 years of experience working in the UK and internationally. He has had a primary focus on the DMM since 2000 and is on the faculty of the Family Relations Institute.  Clark is a board member and founder member of the IASA – International Association for the Study of Attachment ( His current work is focused on participation in research associated with the DMM, on DMM trainings – namely the Adult Attachment Interview and Attachment and Psychopathology (in Australia) – and on applications of the DMM to mental health treatment, child protection and offender rehabilitation.