Neufeld Aotearoa Research

Neufeld Aotearoa practitioners are passionate about taking an evidence based approach to the attachment-based developmental theory of the Neufeld Institute. Read on to learn more about research undertaken here on New Zealand soil, and to find out more about our colleagues and their research work overseas.

The role of corrective emotions in the counsellor-client attachment

A model for processing emotions in therapy

Even though emotions are central in many counselling modalities, how best to work with emotions has not often been clearly articulated or practically presented for counsellors. This paper will outline a brief history of the science of emotion, highlighting the role of emotional regulation in the counsellor-client attachment and present a five-step model of working with emotions in therapy, adapted from the work of Canadian developmental psychologist, Gordon Neufeld. It provides a theoretical and practical framework for understanding the importance of a corrective emotional experience for the healing of attachments, especially in the context of therapeutic work with adult clients.

Ruth's article is published in the British Journal of Guidance and Counselling. To access it click here

Engaging the Disaffected Learner

Making teacher-student relationships count

The disaffected learner may be described as an underachiever with complex social, emotional and learning needs. Disaffection can correspond with a drop in engagement with learning and an increase in both passive and active behavioural disengagement, particularly as students enter secondary school. In the current dissertation it is argued that a positive teacher-student relationship is critical when engaging the disaffected learner. To explore this idea further, Neufeld’s (2008) ‘Teachability Factor’ (an intervention that seeks to equip teachers to develop positive relationships with developmentally stuck disaffected learners), was implemented and evaluated, via a mixed method study design.

To read Adrienne's dissertation click here click here.

Effects of the Teachability Factor Professional Development Workshop

Teachers' Perceptions of Challenging Children in their Classroom

Within the extensive research literature on attachment neurobiology there is little empirical research on its application to education. The research suggests there is a significant relationship between being securely attached and one’s behavioural and academic outcomes, so the benefits of such an approach are potentially significant. While teachers have an increasing awareness of the importance of brain processes, neuroscience research has not been readily available to educators because it is such a new field. In this vacuum neuromyths have flourished based on pseudoscience and lack scientific validity. Therefore the need for an accurate translation of the empirical attachment research findings to education is urgently needed. This research tests whether Teachability Factor, an eight week session professional development course developed by the Neufeld Institute, is able to translate attachment neuroscience findings into an effective, evidence-based program for early childhood teachers.

To read Kaye's dissertation click here.

Neufeld Institute Scientific Research Centre

To read further about international research connected with the Neufeld approach visit the Neufeld Institute Scientific Research Centre. The centre profiles the science behind the relational developmental approach as articulated by Dr. Gordon Neufeld. Here we collect the results of already published scientific research on specific topics that relational developmental psychology deals with. We hope that thanks to our activities, the availability of knowledge about the relational developmental approach will increase both in the scientific world, as well as with specialists and students.

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