Myrna L. Friedlander

Myrna L. Friedlander

Professor and Co-Director of Doctoral Training, Counseling Psychology
Educational & Counseling Psychology
School of Education


Catskill 245

PhD, The Ohio State University
MA, George Washington University

Myrna L. Friedlander

Professor Friedlander joined the Counseling Psychology program in 1981, is co-director of doctoral training, and directs the Spanish Exchange Program. Previously she was the director of doctoral training, director of master’s training, and division director.  She has served as clinician, educator, supervisor, and consultant in a variety of schools, counseling centers, hospitals, and community agencies. Dr. Friedlander's research on the process of counseling and psychotherapy has appeared in the Journal of Counseling Psychology, The Counseling Psychologist, the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, Psychotherapy, Professional Psychology, Family Process, the Journal of Family Psychology, and the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, among several others.  Her current work concerns therapeutic change processes in family therapy.  Dr. Friedlander is a member of the Society for Psychotherapy Research and a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, the American Psychological Society, and the American Association of Applied and Preventive Psychology. In 2001 she was elected Distinguished Psychologist of the Year by the Psychological Association of Northeastern New York, and in 1999 she was honored with the University’s Excellence in Research award.  She is currently an Editorial Board member of the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, Psychotherapy Research, Couple and Family Research, and Psychotherapy.  In 2010 she received a Lifetime Contribution Award from the Section for the Promotion of Psychotherapy Science (Div. 17, APA) and a Distinguished Family Systems Research Award from the American Family Therapy Academy.

Teaching: Theory, research and practice in counseling/psychotherapy; practicum; family systems therapy; supervision and consultation.

Research: Therapeutic and supervisory processes and outcomes, especially verbal interaction and the therapeutic alliance in family therapy.


Escudero, V., & Friedlander, M. L.  (2017).  Therapeutic alliances with families: Empowering clients in challenging cases. New York, NY:  Springer.

Friedlander, M. L.  (2017).  Reflexivity in science and practice: What do French verbs have to do with it?  Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 30, 274-289.

Friedlander, M. L.  (2015). Use of relational strategies to repair alliance ruptures:  How responsive supervisors train
responsive therapists.  Psychotherapy, 32, 174-179.

Friedlander, M. L., Angus, L. E., Xu, M., Wright, S. T., & Stark, N. M. (in press). A close look at therapist contributions to narrative-emotion shifting in a case illustration of brief dynamic therapy. Psychotherapy Research.

Friedlander, M. L., Austin, C. L., & Cabrera, P.  (2014). When psychotherapy is indefinite and there is no final outcome: Case study of a community mental health clinic.   Psychotherapy, 51, 580-594.

Friedlander, M. L., Blanco, S., Bernardi, S., & Shaffer, K. S.  (2017).  Empowering female supervisees:  A feminist, multicultural and relational perspective.  In M. Kopala & M. Keitel, Eds., Handbook of counseling women.  (2nd ed.). (pp.  607-619).  Thousand Oaks, CA:  Sage Publications.

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.

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.

Friedlander, M. L., Escudero, V., Welmers-van der Poll, M., & Heatherington, L. (2019).  Alliances in couple and family therapy.  In J. Norcross & M. J. Lambert, Eds. Psychotherapy relationships that work (3rd ed.; Vol. 1: Evidence-based therapist contributions). (pp. 24-78). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.  Also published in Psychotherapy, 2018, 55, 356-371.     

Friedlander, M. L., Escudero, V., Horvath, A. S., Heatherington, L., Cabero, A., & Martens, M. P.  (2006). System for Observing Family Therapy Alliances:  A tool for research and practice.  Journal of Counseling Psychology, 53, 214-225.   

Friedlander, M. L., Heatherington, L., & Escudero, V.  (2016). Research on change mechanisms: Advances in process research.  In T. Sexton and J. Lebow, Eds.  Handbook of family therapy.  (4th ed.; pp. 454-467).  New York:  Routledge.

Friedlander, M. L., Kangos, K., Muetzelfeld, H., Wright, S. T., Da Silva, N., Kimber, J., Helmer, D., & McAndrew, L. (in press). Introducing the System for Observing Medical Alliances (SOMA): A tool for studying concordance in patient-physician relationships. The Counseling Psychologist.

Friedlander, M. L., Kivlighan, Jr., D. M., & Shaffer, K.  (2012). Exploring actor-partner interdependence in family therapy: Whose view (parent or adolescent) best predicts treatment progress?  Journal of Counseling Psychology, 59, 168-175.

Friedlander, M. L., Lee, H. H., Shaffer, K. S., & Cabrera, P.  (2014). Negotiating therapeutic alliances with a family at impasse:  An evidence-based case study.  Psychotherapy, 51, 41-52.

Friedlander, M. L., Lee, M., & Escudero, V. (2019). What we do and don’t know about the nature and analysis of couple interaction. Couple and Family Psychology: Research and Practice, 8, 24-44.

Friedlander, M. L., Muetzelfeld, H., Re, S., Colvin, K., Quinn-Nilas, C., & Smoliak, O. (in press). Introducing the Expectation and Preference Scales for Couple Therapy (EPSCT): Development, psychometric evaluation, and suggested use in practice and research. Family Process.

Friedlander, M. L., Pieterse, A., & Lambert, J. E.  (2012). The evolution of theory in counseling psychology. In N. Fouad, L. Subich, & J. Carter (Eds.), APA handbook of counseling psychology.  (pp. 31-58). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Friedlander, M. L., Sutherland, O., Sandler, S., Kortz, L., Bernardi, S., Lee, H., & Drozd, A.  (2012). Exploring corrective experiences in a single, successful case of Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy.  Psychotherapy, 49, 349-363.

Ladany, N., Friedlander, M. L., & Nelson, M. L.  (2016). Supervision essentials for the Critical Events Model of psychotherapy supervision.  Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Shaffer, K. S., & Friedlander, M. L. (2017.).  What do “interpersonally sensitive” supervisors do and how do supervisees experience a relational approach to supervision?  Psychotherapy Research, 27, 167-178.