The Hong Kong Catholic Marriage Advisory Council

Training Program in Emotion-Focused Therapy for Individuals


Emotion-Focused Therapy (EFT) is based on the findings that have now garnered ample empirical evidence that emotions influence thought and behavior and contrary to the view that the best way to change emotions is by changing thoughts. EFT proposes that the best way to achieve enduring change in cognition, behavior and interaction is by changing emotion with emotion. EFT has developed methods based on over 30 years of research on how people change in therapy to help people become aware of, express and regulate emotion in order to better tolerate and utilize its offerings, reflect on emotion to make sense of it, and transform it by both accessing alternate opposing emotion and having corrective emotional experiences. EFT is now recognized as evidence based treatments for depression, for couple conflict and there is also growing evidence of its effectiveness for trauma, interpersonal problems and eating disorders.


This training program is designed for clinical practitioners preferably with prior knowledge of Emotion-Focused Therapy. The program aims at equipping trainees with a solid grounding in the theory and clinical competence in working with individuals within the framework of Emotion-Focused Therapy. Throughout the course of the training program, the trainees are expected to :

Build abilities in empathic attunement to client’s emotion processes
Develop an understanding of the theoretical underpinnings, emotion theory and perspectives in doing emotion assessment and in facilitating emotional processing and changes in clients
Develop conceptual and perceptual skills in addressing psychological issues of clients
Acquire intervention frameworks and skills in the use of emotion-focused psychotherapeutic interventions with clients in local context


The Hong Kong Catholic Marriage Advisory Council

The Hong Kong Catholic Marriage Advisory Council ( is a non-governmental organization established in 1965. The aim of HKCMAC is to provide professional services for the promotion of happy marriages and responsible parenthood. HKCMAC has been providing counselling service for individuals, couples and families for nearly 45 years. Over the past few decades, HKCMAC has been actively involved in the provision of professional training in the field of social work and family mediation. HKCMAC has organized workshops and training programs in Emotion-Focused Therapy since 2004. HKCMAC organized the 2014 Conference on Emotion-Focused Therapy: Ten years in Hong Kong on 25-26 April 2014. The 2014 Conference on EFT has provided a platform for renowned EFT scholars and therapists to share their latest EFT research findings and clinical expertise as well as enhancing clinicians to keep abreast of applications in EFT.
In cooperation with

Emotion-Focused Therapy Clinic, York University, Toronto, Canada

The Emotion-Focused Therapy Clinic ( is affiliated with the York University Psychology Clinic, a new state-of-the-art community mental health and training centre associated with the Department of Psychology in the Faculty of Health at York University. The EFT Clinic provides training in Emotion-Focused Therapy in Canada and in different countries, ranging from one-day workshops on different applications of EFT to various levels of intensive four-day training in Emotion-Focused Therapy.


Emotion-Focused Therapy Institute, Chicago

Emotion-Focused Therapy Institute is a free-standing institute in Chicago, Illinois offering training in both the EFT Individual and Couples approach within a broad range of formats.


The Training Program in Emotion-Focused Therapy for Individuals 2016-2017 is recognized by the International Society for Emotion Focused Therapy (ISEFT). The program graduates will be qualified as attaining "Level A: Completion of Basic EFT Training."


Dr. Rhonda N. Goldman
Dr. Rhonda N. Goldman is a professor of Clinical Psychology at the Illinois School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University, Schaumburg Campus. She is also an affiliate therapist at the Family Institute at Northwestern University in Evanston. She has over 20 years of clinical experience working with both couples and individuals. She is also the president of the Emotion-Focused Therapy Institute in Chicago.

Dr. Goldman is one of the main developers of EFT, having co-authored four of the main texts on Emotion-Focused Therapy including Leaning Emotion-Focused Therapy (2003), Case Studies in Emotion-Focused Treatment of Depression (2007), and Emotion-Focused Couples Therapy: The Dynamics of Emotion, Love, and Power (2008) and Case formulation in Emotion-Focused Therapy: Co-creating Clinical Maps for Change (2015), all of which are published by APA Books. She practices, teaches, and conducts research on emotional processes and outcomes in emotion-focused therapy and has written journal articles and book chapters on empathy, vulnerability, depression, and emotion. She is the recipient (2011) of the Carmi Harrari Early Career Award from Division 32, the Society of Humanistic Psychology of the American Psychological Association. Most recently, she is Past-President of the Society for the Exploration of Psychotherapy Integration (SEPI).

Dr. Alberta E. Pos
Dr. Alberta E. Pos is presently an associate professor on the clinical psychology faculty, adult clinical stream, in the department of psychology at York University in Toronto where she has been training and supervising doctoral students in EFT and local professionals for almost two decades. She is a recognized supervisor for training EFT therapists internationally. She has been involved in training EFT therapists with Dr. Leslie Greenberg for over 15 years, and has independently run multi-day international trainings in China and Canada. During her training years, Dr. Pos participated as a therapist in several research trials on EFT, including EFT RCTs for depression, and for emotional injury for both individuals and couples.

Dr. Pos is presently engaged in a number of funded research initiatives to study the process of change in EFT, with a particular focus on individual differences in clients’ engagement in EFT’s key processes such as empathy, alliance and emotional processing. Dr. Pos has also published several papers on EFT and emotional processing, one of which resulted in her being awarded the New Researcher Award from the Society for the Exploration of Psychotherapy Integration in 2011. She was on this organization’s steering committee for eight years and is now serves as an active advisory board member for this organization. Having also been trained in CBT and Dialectical Behavior Therapy for borderline personality disorder, Dr. Pos is now also working on adapting EFT for more complex populations such as personality disorders, particularly borderline and avoidant PDs. A further recent interest is in how to do productive chair-work with populations vulnerable to emotional dysregulation. Even more recently Dr. Pos has collaborated with Dr. Greenberg and the Breuninger Foundation in developing an intervention for increasing emotional competence in female leaders. She is a recipient of a York Catalyst Award to support this new line of research.


Mr. Jay TSE
Mr. Jay Tse is a marriage and family therapist at the Counselling and Training Centre of The Hong Kong Catholic Marriage Advisory Council. He earned a Master of Family Therapy degree and completed two-year training in Gestalt Therapy at Southern Connecticut State University, New Haven, Connecticut, United States. He is a Clinical Fellow and Approved Supervisor of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. Also, he is a Certified Sex Therapist (HKASERT), and an Accredited Family Mediator and Family Mediation Supervisor (HKIAC).

Mr. Jay Tse has been trained in Emotion-Focused Therapy with Professor Leslie Greenberg since 2004, as well as receiving training from Dr. Serine Warwar, Dr. Wanda Malcolm, Dr. Alberta Pos, and Dr. Rhonda Goldman over the years. He is a Certified EFT Trainer (Individual Therapy) recognized by the International Society for Emotion Focused Therapy (ISEFT). He is also an EFT Training Facilitator (Couple Therapy) and an Emotion-Focused Therapist (Couple Therapy) certified by the EFT Clinic, York University, Toronto, Canada and HKCMAC. He has been a facilitator involving in skills coaching in the module workshops and monthly supervision groups in the yearly Training Programs in EFT since 2007. In addition to his clinical practice, he has presented training workshops and seminars for social service agencies in recent years.

Mrs. Catherine POON
Mrs. Catherine Poon is a Registered Social Worker. She earned a Master of Social Work in the University of Hong Kong and has worked with the Hong Kong Catholic Marriage Advisory Council (HKCMAC) for over 20 years as a marriage counselor. She is an Associate Fellow of the Hong Kong Professional Counselling Association.

Mrs. Catherine Poon is a Certified EFT Trainer (Individual Therapy) recognized by the International Society for Emotion Focused Therapy (ISEFT) and an EFT Training Facilitator (Couple Therapy) certified by the EFT Clinic, York University, Toronto, Canada and HKCMAC. She has been trained in Emotion-Focused Therapy with Professor Leslie Greenberg since 2004. She has been involving in skills coaching in the Module Workshops and conducting monthly supervision groups in the yearly Training Programs in EFT since 2007.

Mrs. Catherine Poon has obtained a Master of Buddhist Studies in the University of Hong Kong in 2014. She established the Lotus on the Ripple Counseling Room and is currently in private practice. She continues to do individual and couple therapy, training workshops on EFT, Focusing and Mindfulness, and clinical supervision for local practitioners. She is an Honorary Lecturer at the University of Hong Kong since 2015, teaching Emotion-Focused Interventions and Marital Counseling for Master degree students of counseling and social work.

Mrs. Selina LEUNG Ho Siu Man
Mrs. Selina Leung is a Registered Counselling Psychologist of HKPS, Certified Emotion-Focused Therapist and Approved EFT trainer by the International Society for Emotion Focused Therapy (ISEFT). Also Certified Counsellor and Approved Supervisor of HKPCA. Besides teaching EFT in Hong Kong and China, Mrs. Leung also assists in facilitation for Leslie Greenberg, Rhonda Goldman and Robert Elliott in China and Singapore in recent years. She has been trained and supervised under Professor Greenberg in Hong Kong and Toronto since 2007.

Mrs. Leung earned her BSc in psychology at the University of Toronto, Canada and MTS, focused in counselling at Tyndale University College and Seminary (previously known as Ontario Theological Seminary), Ontario, Canada. After graduated, she worked at different social service agencies for seven years in Toronto. Mrs. Leung had worked as a Senior Student Counsellor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong for the past 21 years up to her retirement in 2013. Currently she is in private practice and founded the IEFTA, Institute of Emotion Focused Therapy (Asia), a member Institute of isEFT.

Dr Nia Pryde
Dr Nia Pryde obtained her Bachelor of Arts Hons in Psychology (Durham), Master of Science in Clinical Psychology (Newcastle), Doctor of Clinical Psychology (Wales, Bangor) and Postgraduate Diploma in Psychotherapy (Leeds) in Britain. She is a Clinical, Counselling & Health Psychologist (BPsS chartered, HCPC registered, HKPsS registered), a Member of the BPsS Register of Applied Psychology Practice Supervisors, and a Senior Practitioner Member of the BPsS Register of Psychologists Specialising in Psychotherapy. She is a Registered Sexual & Relationship Psychotherapist (UKCP), an Accredited Supervisor (COSRT), and an Accredited Family Mediator (HKIAC). She is a Fellow of the Hong Kong Psychological Society and Honorary President of the Psychotherapy Society of Hong Kong. She has held a senior clinical post in the British National Health Service, a full-time faculty position at the University of Hong Kong, and is currently in private practice in Hong Kong, where she works with individuals and couples across a range of presentations and provides supervision to mental health professionals.

Dr Pryde completed Levels I, II, and III of the Emotion Focused Therapy Institute, as well as the Emotion Focused Couples Institute, in Toronto under Professor Leslie Greenberg, who is also her supervisor. She completed the Externship for Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy under Dr Sue Johnson and Core Skills Training under Dr Ting Liu. She is an EFT Training Facilitator (Individual Therapy & Couple Therapy). She will be involved in monthly English speaking supervision groups and skills coaching in the module workshops of the Training Program in EFT for Individuals (2016-2017).

Miss Elsie Lam
Miss Elsie Lam is a Registered Social Worker since 1980. She is a Certified Emotion-Focused Therapist & Approved Trainer (Individual Therapy) by the International Society for Emotion Focused Therapy (ISEFT).

Miss Lam is also an Emotion-Focused Therapy Intermediate Level Practitioner (Couple Therapy), an Emotion-Focused Therapy Training Facilitator (Couple Therapy) certified by the Emotion-Focused Therapy Clinic, York University, Toronto, Canada and HKCMAC.

In 1980, Miss Elsie Lam was employed as social worker in the Pelletier Hall, providing counselling to female juvenile residents and their families. In 1985, she became the first Chinese full-time Counsellor in the ‘Resource, The Counseling Centre Ltd’ (which was formerly known as the Marriage and Personal Counseling Service) providing both personal, martial and family counselling.

Besides, Miss Elsie Lam had over 20 years of experience in teaching and supervision in the Hong Kong Polytechnic University and the City University of Hong Kong.

Miss Elsie Lam established the ‘Elsie Lam Counseling Centre Ltd’. She has been trained and supervised directly under Professor Leslie Greenberg since 2007. She is applying Emotion-Focused Therapy as her core therapeutic approach in working with local Chinese in her private practice. She conducted various training workshops and clinical supervision to integrate the application of Emotion-Focused Therapy in different local social service agencies.

Course Curriculum

Training Components
One-day pre-program workshop
Four modules of 3-day workshops on theoretical framework and skills training
Practicum (12 three-hour peer practicum group sessions)
Group supervision (12 three-hour group supervision sessions)
A minimum of 12 hours of clinical practice in individual therapy
Two written assignments: (transcripts of 20-minute segment of videotaped individual therapy sessions)

The trainees will receive in-depth skills training through one pre-program workshop and four intensive workshops in which a combination of didactic lectures, video illustrations, live modeling and coaching, supervised role-playing practice, and case discussions will be used. Besides, monthly group supervision and peer practicum are adopted as medium to promote trainees’ integration of theory and practice of EFT throughout the program. Each supervision group will be guided by a local EFT Training Facilitator in Hong Kong.

Medium of Instruction

- English for Modules I, III & IV workshop
- Cantonese for Module II workshop
- Cantonese for practicum and group supervision
- One English speaking Supervision Group and an alternative 3-day format of Module II Workshop in English would be conducted if there are 6 English speaking applicants successfully enrolled.

Venues Arrangement

For Workshops: To be confirmed

For Group Supervision: HKCMAC Headquarters, Room 101, 1/F., Low Block, Grand Millennium Plaza, 181 Queen's Road Central, Hong Kong.

For Practicum and Clinical Practice: As arranged by trainees

Workshop Content

Pre-program workshop—Introduction to Emotion-Focused Therapy
22 April 2016, 2:30pm—8:00pm
Presented by Mr. Jay Tse & Mrs. Catherine Poon

Part I : Brief Overview of Emotion Theory
What is emotion?
Emotion scheme
Emotion assessment: Different types of emotional responses

Part II : Empathic Skills Training
Empathy, and empathic responses
Creating an alliance
Empathic attunement
Emotional exploration

Module I—EFT Theoretical Introduction (Individual Therapy) and EFT Skills Training (I)
9-11 May 2016
Presented by Dr. Rhonda Goldman

Dialectical Constructivist Theory
Markers identification and Tasks
Emotion assessment
Principles of emotional change
Model of change
Phases of treatment
Introduction to Case Formulation
Two-chair Dialogue for Splits
Unfinished Business

Module II—EFT Skills Training (II)
22, 23 & 26 August 2016
Presented by Ms. Elsie Lam, Mrs. Selina Leung, Mrs. Catherine Poon & Mr. Jay Tse

Empathy, evocation, arousal and exploration in emotion processes
Allowing, accepting and owning emotions
Accessing primary adaptive emotions & core maladaptive emotion schemes
Supporting the emergence of primary needs, and restructuring core emotion schemes
General stages of task resolution model
Experiential focusing
Systemic evocative unfolding
Self-critical splits & coaching splits

Module III—EFT Skills Training (III)
10, 12 & 13 December 2016
Presented by Dr. Alberta Pos

Marker identification
Issues in identifying Markers of Splits and Unfinished Business
Additional Markers: Self-interruption, and Self soothing
Working with Unfinished Business: The process
Evocation of emotion
The interruptive process
The letting go process
Imaginal restructuring
Advanced work with Two-Chair Dialogue: The process
Self-interruptive dialogues
Promoting New Narrative Constructions
Specific tools for working with anger, sadness, fear and shame

Module IV—EFT Advanced Skills Training & Consolidation of Theory & Practice
24-26 April 2017
Presented by Dr. Rhonda Goldman

Advanced Emotion Assessment
Identification of Productive emotion & Unproductive emotion

Further Advanced Intervention work including:
Advanced work with the Two-Chair Dialogue for negative self-evaluation, and Empty Chair for Unfinished Business
The interruptive process
The letting go process
Self soothing
Resolving stuck points in split chair work
Application of EFT to specific disorders such as depression, anxiety, trauma

Case Formulation
Stages of case formulation

EFT Supervision


The practicum is an interactive group process with emphasis on peer role-playing practice and case reviews for integrating case conceptualization into practice within an EFT framework. Each group of trainees will hold a three-hour practicum session on a monthly basis over the 12-month program year.

Group supervision

The group supervision aims at providing trainees with in-depth skills training to work with individuals in accordance with the EFT approach. Each supervision group will hold a three-hour monthly session over the 12-month program year. Each supervision group will be guided by a local EFT Training Facilitator, and the formats of the group supervision include skills training, reviews of audio-/ video-taped counselling sessions, and case consultation.

Clinical Practice

The trainees are required to apply the EFT approach to working with individuals with at least 12 hours of practice during the program year. They are encouraged to audio-/video-tape their case sessions with clients' consent, for the purpose of self-evaluation and having consultation in group supervision.

Completion of the Training Program

The trainees are required to complete two written assignments of transcripts of 20-minute video clip of clinical practice with the application of EFT for individuals. The trainees also need to fulfill at least 80% of the attendance in 1) the pre-program workshop, 2) the Module I-IV training workshops totally 12 days, 3) the monthly 3-hour practicum, and 4) the monthly 3-hour group supervision respectively. By completing the assignments and attendance requirements captioned above, the trainees will be granted a certificate in completion of the "Training Program in Emotion-Focused Therapy for Individuals".

Recognition and Certification

The Hong Kong Catholic Marriage Advisory Council has organized One-year Training Program in Emotion- Focused Therapy since 2007 with a built-in competency advancement path in the program design. The competency advancement path in the EFT Training Program includes a series of in-depth EFT training and supervision for 1) EFT Practitioner Certification, and 2) EFT Therapist Certification. The EFT Practitioner Certification involves an evaluation of the clinical practitioners using EFT approach to work with their clients and demonstrating moderate level of competence in EFT theory and interventions. The Certified EFT Practitioners are recommended to receive further EFT training, supervision and practice so as to complete the EFT Therapist Certification in which the EFT therapist demonstrates substantial EFT competence.

International Society for Emotion Focused Therapy (ISEFT) has founded in 2011 by Dr. Leslie Greenberg, Dr. Robert Elliott, Dr. Rhonda N. Goldman, and Dr. Jeanne Watson. According to the “Minimum Training Standards for Individual Therapy Training Programs (12 June 2015 Version)” set up by ISEFT, there are various levels of recognition and also the possibility of certification:
Level A: Completion of Basic EFT Training
Level B: Completion of EFT Supervised Practice
Level C: Certified EFT Therapist
Level D: Certified EFT Supervisor
Level E: Certified EFT Trainer

The HKCMAC Training Program in Emotion-Focused Therapy is recognized by the International Society for Emotion Focused Therapy (ISEFT). The trainees completing the Training Program in Emotion-Focused Therapy will be qualified as attaining "Level A: Completion of Basic EFT Training."

The EFT Training at HKCMAC put emphasis on enhancing the competency building and continuous assessment in the process of EFT Practitioner Certification and EFT Therapist Certification. Effective May 2016, HKCMAC requires the applicants of the EFT Practitioner Certification to meet requirements of the completion of one-year EFT training program of HKCMAC (Level A: Completion of Basic EFT Training). The applicants also need to see individual clients for at least 30 EFT sessions additionally and to have at least additional 8 supervision hours with presentation of video-/audio-taped clinical sessions supervised by an ISEFT Certified EFT Trainer/Supervisor, prior to their application for the EFT Practitioner Certification review. Besides, the supervision hours accumulated in this process of EFT Practitioner Certification can be counted toward the requirements of “Level B: Completion of Supervised Practice” of the “Minimum Training Standards for EFT Individual Therapy” of ISEFT. The applicant of the EFT Practitioner Certification is required to submit a transcript with thorough EFT case conceptualization and a 20-minute videotaped case session in DVD format to a designated EFT trainer recognized by ISEFT for an independent assessment. The applicant also needs to pay for an independent processing fee for such assessment.

Furthermore, HKCMAC highly recommends that the Certified EFT Practitioners will continuously involve in intensive in-depth EFT training, supervision and practice so as to attain “Level B: Completion of EFT Supervised Practice” and “Level C: Certified EFT Therapist” recognized by International Society for Emotion Focused Therapy. The requirements of EFT Therapist Certification at HKCMAC are consistent with the requirements of “Level C: Certified EFT Therapist” of the “Minimum Training Standards for EFT Individual Therapy” of International Society for Emotion Focused Therapy (

Who should attend

Social workers, psychologists, psychiatrists, counsellors, and other mental health professionals.

Prerequisites for Application

A recognized degree in social work, psychology, counselling or other mental health related disciplines
At least two years of clinical experience in working with individuals
Actively involving in current clinical practice
Preferably with prior knowledge of Emotion-Focused Therapy


Minimum: 24
Maximum: 36

Course Fee*:

Early Bird (application submitted on or before 31 March 2016)
Remarks: No installment will be arranged.


Please send the completed application form to HKCMAC, and no cheque payment is required to be attached at the submission of application form:
By post:“The Hong Kong Catholic Marriage Advisory Council, Room 101, 1/F., Low Block, Grand Millennium Plaza, 181 Queen’s Road Central, Hong Kong.
(Re: EFT 2016-2017 Application)”
By email: (Re: EFT 2016-2017 Application)

Enrollment procedure

The enrollment interview will begin in February 2016 onwards. Successful candidates will receive a notification of admission and payment of program fee. Final confirmation on the admission will be made after payment is received.

CE Points

The Division of Clinical Psychology of The Hong Kong Psychological Society has accredited the “Training Program in Emotion-Focused Therapy for Individuals (2016-2017) ” as a Continuing Education activity as well as approving 36 CE hours for the Training Program.


If you have any enquiry, please feel free to contact Mr. Arthur Lam at 2810 1104 or through e-mail at

Click here to download the EFT Program (2016-2017) Application Form


Peer Reviews of the work of Emotion-Focused Therapy

"Greenberg is both a pioneer and the field's premier investigator in the important work of applying the basic research on emotions to the process of psychotherapy.”

— Marsha M. Linehan, PhD

"Most psychotherapists and theories of psychotherapy recognize, in one way or another, the centrality of emotion in both psychopathology and therapeutic change.”

— Morris Eagle, Ph.D.

"Although emotion has long been recognized as playing a significant role in the development, maintenance and change of most clinical problems, the guidelines for working with emotions therapeutically have always left something to be desired.”

— Marvin R. Goldfried, PhD

"…challenged clinicians and researchers to reconsider the role of emotions in psychopathology and how best to integrate feelings into psychotherapy."

— Donald Meichenbaum, PhD

"…providing an in-depth explication of the moment-by-moment process of emotion-focused treatment of trauma."

— Catherine C. Classen, PhD

"…a unique, empirically supported approach to the treatment of depression…it utilizes client-centered relationship principles, gestalt exercises, and cognitive theory to present an integrative, growth-oriented, whole-person approach."

— Arthur C. Bohart, PhD

"Emotion-focused therapy has long been recognized for its strong theoretical foundations, powerful technical interventions, and broad empirical support…By delineating clear and logical phases of case formulation and by illustrating them with captivating clinical materials, [in their recent co-authored publication] Goldman and Greenberg launch the humanistic-experiential tradition into new territories and make a significant contribution to the entire profession-wide shift to evidence-based practice."

— Louis G. Castonguay, PhD

"A major contribution to the continuing evolution of emotion-focused couples therapy by providing a conceptually rich new methodology for helping couples improve their capacity for affect regulation.”

— Alan S. Gurman, PhD

"Outlining an approach to emotion-focused couples therapy broadly informed by the latest research on emotion, motivation, self- and other-affect regulation, even affective neuroscience….a work of theoretical and practical value to both practicing clinicians and active scientists.”

— James Coan, PhD