Myrna L. Friedlander

Training Director

Ph.D. Ohio State University
M.A. George Washington University

Phone: (518) 442-5049

Dr. Friedlander joined the Counseling Psychology program at the University at Albany in 1981 and has been the Director of Doctoral Training since 1999.

She has served as clinician, educator, supervisor, and consultant in a variety of schools, counseling centers, hospitals, and community agencies. She is the 2001-2002 recipient of the Distinguished Psychologist Award from the Psychological Association of Northeastern New York. Dr. Friedlander's research on the process of counseling and psychotherapy has appeared in over 100 articles in the Journal of Counseling Psychology, The Counseling Psychologist, the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, Psychotherapy, Professional Psychology, Family Process, theJournal of Family Psychology, and the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, among others. Additionally, she co-authored two books published by the American Psychological Association: Critical Events in Psychotherapy Supervision: An Interpersonal Approach (2005, with N. Ladany and M. L. Nelson) and Therapeutic Alliances with Couples and Families: An Empirically Informed Guide to Practice, with V. Escudero and L. Heatherington.

In 1999 Dr. Friedlander received the President’s Award for Excellence in Research. She has also been honored with the 2010 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Section for the Promotion of Psychotherapy Science, Society for Counseling Psychology (Division 17, APA). She and co-author Laurie Heatherington were jointly honored in 2010 as recipients of the Distinguished Contribution to Family Systems Research award by the American Family Therapy Academy. Dr. Friedlander is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and the American Psychological Society. She is currently an Editorial Board member of the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, Psychotherapy, Couple and Family Therapy Research, and Psychotherapy Research.

Research Interests

  • Counseling and supervisory processes and outcomes
  • Verbal interaction and the therapeutic alliance in family therapy


Associate, Center for the Elimination of Minority Health Disparities, University at Albany

Courses Taught

  • ECPY 704 & 705 Theory, Research, and Practice in Counseling Psychology I & II
  • ECPY 805 & 806 Doctoral Practicum I & II
  • ECPY 809 Family Therapy

Representative Publications

Beck, M., Friedlander, M. L., & Escudero, V. (in press). Three perspectives on clients’ experiences of the therapeutic alliance: A discovery-oriented investigation. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy.

Friedlander, M. L., Escudero, V., Horvath, S., Heatherington, L., Cabero, A., & Martens, M. (in press). System for Observing Family Therapy Alliances: A tool for research and practice. Journal of Counseling Psychology.

Heatherington, L. & Friedlander, M.L. (in press). Manifestations and facilitation of insight in couple and family therapy. In L. Castonguay & C.Hill (Eds.), Insight in psychotherapy. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Friedlander, M. L., Escudero, V., & Heatherington, L. (2006). Therapeutic alliances with couples and families: An empirically informed guide to practice. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association Books.

Heatherington, L., Friedlander, M. L., & Greenberg, L. S. (2005). Change process research in couples and family therapy: Methodological challenges and opportunities. Journal of Family Psychology, 19, 18-27.

Ladany, N., Friedlander, M. L., & Nelson, M. L. (2005). Critical events in psychotherapy supervision: An interpersonal approach. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association Books.

Friedlander, M. L., Escudero, V., & Guzman, M. (2001). International exchanges in family therapy: Training, research, and practice in Spain and the U.S. The Counseling Psychologist, 30, 314-329.

Nelson, M. L., & Friedlander, M. L. (2001). A close look at conflictual supervisory relationships: The trainee’s perspective. Journal of CounselingPsychology, 48, 384-395.

Friedlander, M. L., & Tuason, M. T. (2000). Processes and outcomes in couples and family therapy. In S. Brown & R. Lent (Eds.), Handbook of counseling psychology (3rd ed). (pp. 797 - 824). New York: Wiley.

Friedlander, M. L., Heatherington, L., & Marrs, A. (2000). Responding to blame in family therapy: A narrative/constructionist perspective. American Journal of Family Therapy, 28, 133-146.

Friedlander, M. L., Larney, L., Skau, M., Hotaling, M., Cutting, M., & Schwam, M. (2000). Bicultural identification: Experiences of internationally adopted children and their parents. Journal of Counseling Psychology,47,1-12.

Friedlander, M. L. (1999). Ethnic identity development of internationally adopted children and adolescents: Implications for family therapists. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 25, 43-60.

Friedlander, M. L., & Heatherington, L. (1998). Assessing clients’ constructions of their problems in family therapy discourse. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 24, 289-303.

Friedlander, M. L., Heatherington, L., Johnson, B., & Skowron, E. A. (1994). “Sustaining engagement”: A change event in family therapy. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 4, 438-448.

Recent Grant

Enhancing retention and effectiveness: Family therapy for low-income, at-risk yoth. Funded by the Community Foundation of the Capital District. $22,460.

Research Group

Bi-monthly to discuss student research interests.

Personal Interests

Traveling, quilting, movies, and ethnic music.