Dynamic Processes and the Supervisory Relationship

In-person Seminar   
Instructor: Laurie Herzog, M.S.W., Ph.D., LICSW   
Level: Intermediate   
CEs: 8.75 
Target Audience: Social workers and other social service providers who are currently providing clinical supervision and have supervised for at least three years.
Course Delivery Method, Format and Instructor Interaction: Live in-person seminar

In this course students will expand their understanding of the supervisory relationship exploring central dynamic processes including: provision of a holding environment, parallel processes, transference and countertransference, internalization, the role of self­ awareness and self reflection and the management of affect and ambiguity. Additionally, we will refine our understanding of the developmental processes within supervisory relationships, and the requirement for differential use of self, the different roles possible in supervision (i.e. modeling, teaching, evaluating, etc.), and the establishment and maintenance of boundaries. We undertake these explorations through a lens of cultural humility, and we consider together the inextricable and ubiquitous influences of power, social identity cultural diversity and oppression on the work of clinical supervision.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Describe elements of the supervisory relationship from various psychodynamic developmental perspectives
  2. Identify the essential components of establishing and maintaining a successful supervisory relationship
  3. Define the developmental processes inherent in the supervision relationship
  4. Describe the challenges and opportunities which arise in the supervisory relationship
  5. Explain the centrality of culture and the influence of oppression on supervisory practice
  6. Distinguish the similarities and differences between supervision and treatment relationships


Session 1: Introduction: Psychodynamic Concepts and the Supervision Relationship   
Class Outline Day 1: 1.75 hours with 10-minute break 

  1. Overview: What do we mean by a “psychodynamic” approach to supervision?
  2. Cultural humility and supervisory relationship
  3. Supervision as an influential relationship: classical and relational perspectives 
  4. A Winnicottian view: The “good enough” supervisor and the holding function of supervision

Session 2: Dynamics of Empathy, Resistance, & Parallel Process and The Cultural Third   
Class Outline Day 2: 2 hours with 10-minute break

  1. A self psychological view: Supervisor as a self object: idealization, mirroring and twinship
  2. Empathy, empathic failure and repair in the supervisory dyad
  3. Parallel process in supervision
  4. Understanding, preparing for and using resistance
  5. The role of empathy and the challenge of evaluation

Session 3: Transference / Countertransference Dynamics and the Teach vs Treat dilemma    
Class Outline Day 3: 2 hours with 10-minute break

  1. Understanding transference and countertransference enactments in supervision 
  2. The teach versus treat dilemma: supervision versus psychotherapy
  3. Ubiquitous influence of culture and relational dynamics
  4. A central tension: supporting the client’s treatment and the development of the supervisee

Session 4: The Impact of Trauma on the Work of Supervision    
Class Outline Day 4: 2 hours with 10-minute break

  1. Psychodynamic perspective on trauma 
  2. Conceptualize the impact of trauma on the supervision relationship
  3. Identify and explore the special requirements of supervision of treatment of traumatized clients
  4. When things go “wrong”: Enactment, rupture and repair and using impasse

Session 5:  Supervision: The Facilitating Environment   
Class Outline Day 5: 2 hours with 10-minute break

  1. Internalization of skills: Yours as a supervisor and theirs as clinicians
  2. Achieving maximum development for your supervisee
  3. Realistic re­assessment and goal setting
  4. Your development as a supervisor
Portrait of Laurie Herzog wearing a black and grey top and glasses.

Laurie Herzog, M.S.W. '85, Ph.D. '97

Adjunct Professor | Practicum Faculty Adviser | Practicum Seminar Instructor | Director of the Advanced Clinical Supervision and Foundations of Clinical Supervision Certificates
Laurie Herzog is the director of the Advanced Clinical Supervision program at the Smith College School for Social Work. She earned her M.S.W. (1985) and her Ph…
Completion Requirements for In-Person Seminars

To receive a CE certificate, you must attend the entirety of the seminar. Partial credit will not be awarded to those who attend only a portion of the seminar. For live, in-person seminars, participants must sign in and out of the session and complete an evaluation. A link to the online evaluation will be emailed to participants within 24 hours of the conclusion of the course. It is attendee’s responsibility to contact their state licensing board/certification boards to determine eligibility to meet continuing education requirements.

How Will a CE Certificate Be Awarded?

Upon completing the evaluation for the in-person seminar, participants will be emailed their online certificate​ within 30 days of seminar completion​. ​Participants should save and/or print ​the certificate upon receipt for ​their records. Receiving the CE certificate is contingent on completion of the evaluation and signing in and out of the seminar.