Phebe Sessions, M.S.W., Ph.D.


Phebe Sessions

Contact Information


B.A., Smith College

M.S.W., Smith College School for Social Work

Ph.D., Brandeis University Florence Heller School for Advanced Studies in Social Welfare


The current focus of Phebe Sessions’ work is school-based social work practice. She is interested in the implications for clinical practice of the integration of social, cultural and psychological theories. She currently has been exploring the relevance of narrative therapies, based on post-structural theories for collaborative models of practice in  inner-city schools. She is also interested in the integration of narrative with developmental models.

Sessions' practice and research background includes both psychodynamic and family therapy theories and practice models.

At Smith, Sessions has taught courses in social work practice with individuals and familiesfamily theoryfamily therapy; clinical practice in low income communities; couples’ therapyclinical social work practice;  private troubles and public issues: the social construction of assessment; and social work practice with older adults.

Sessions received both her bachelor’s degree and M.S.W. from Smith College. She received her Ph.D. from Brandeis University, Florence Heller School for Advanced Studies in Social Welfare. She retired from the Smith College School for Social Work in June 2018.

Selected Publications

Sessions, P. & Hanson, A. (2008). Enhancing control and empowerment for elders through assistive technology. International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society.

Sessions, Phebe & Fanolis, V. (2006). Partners for Success: A collaborative project in school-based mental health. In L. Combrinck-Graham (Ed.). Children in family contexts, (2nd ed.). New York: Guilford Press.

Lightburn, A. & Sessions, P. (2006). Community-based Clinical Practice: Recreating the culture of care. In A. Lightburn & P. Sessions (Eds.). Handbook of Community-based Clinical Practice. New York: Oxford University Press.

Selected Presentations

Sessions, P. (2010). Context-driven gero-infusion: Lessons learned from a CDI cohort. At CSWE Annual Conference, Portland, OR.

Sessions, P. (2008, January). Enhancing control and empowerment for the elderly through assistive technology. Presentation at International Conference on Technology, Knowledge and Society, Boston, MA.