Practicum in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction

The Practicum in MBSR is an in-depth training program offering you an opportunity to:

  • Immerse yourself in the UMass Medical School Center for Mindfulness approach to the CFM practicum classMindfulness-based Stress Reduction Program
  • Study the curriculum, program flow, and contextual and theoretical background of MBSR
  • Inquire and reflect on a range of issues arising out of the experience and principles of MBSR
  • Prepare and lead a seminar presentation that includes mindfulness practice, theory, and application
  • Familiarize yourself with perspectives on learning, growing, human development, and healing inherent in the MBSR curriculum.

There are two versions of the Practicum in MBSR: an Eight-week Practicum and a Nine-day Practicum.

Practicum Learning Objectives

  • Educate health care and other professionals in the principles of MBSR
  • Discuss and analyze the theoretical, philosophical, pedagogical, and scientific underpinnings of MBSR
  • Examine MBSR within the larger fields of mind-body and integrative medicine
  • Review and critique MBSR and other mindfulness-based research and scientific literature
  • Foster a coherent, active international network of MBSR professionals

Practicum Prerequisites

  • Completion of an 8-week MBSR course as a participant
  • *Note: If you do not have a live 8-Week MBSR class in your area, participation in the MBSR Online course offered through Sounds True plus participation in the Mindfulness Tools Program fulfills this prerequisite. If you are choosing this option and intend on applying for the 9 Day Practicum in MBSR, you must take Mindfulness Tools Program as a stand-alone course first. The embedded Mindfulness Tools portion of the 9 Day Practicum in MBSR does not count toward this prerequisite
  • Participation in one (1) 5-7 day silent, teacher led mindfulness meditation retreats (preference will be given to those who have completed more than one retreat).
  • Regular daily mindfulness meditation practice

Practicum in MBSR - 8 Week

The Eight-week Practicum is a unique forum for immersing yourself in the experience an MBSR course taught by a senior CFM teacher. Coupling the MBSR program with a weekly professional seminar offers you a direct experience of the impact of MBSR in your life, meditation practice, and profession. Since its inception in 1981, more than 2,000 professionals have completed this program. As a participant in the Eight-week Practicum you will be asked to:

  • Required participation in a pre-program Practicum opening and post-program closure, each 4.5 hours long, held on the first Monday and last Friday of the 8-week program.
  • Participate in the 8-week MBSR course. This includes weekly classes of approximately 2.5 to 3.5 hours and one full-day session on a weekend during the program.
  • Engage in weekly 3-hour Practicum seminar class focused on integrating the experience of the MBSR course through dialogue with your teacher and other Practicum participants. The Practicum seminar class meets on the same day as the MBSR class.
  • Create brief presentations and reflect upon reading assignments.
  • Guide other seminar participants in mindfulness practices incorporated in the MBSR curriculum.

We offer day and afternoon/evening sessions of the Eight-Week Practicum, which usually occur on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays.

Examples of Day & Evening Schedules:
Day:  MBSR class 9:00 – 11:30am*
Practicum seminar 12:30 – 3:30pm
Evening: Practicum seminar 1:30 – 4:30pm
MBSR class 6:00 – 8:30pm*
Required 4.5 hour program opening on the first Monday
Required 4.5 hour program closure on the last Friday

 *Note: the first and last class are extended by a half-hour and one hour, respectively

If you have a scheduling preference, please let us know in your application letter. We will do our best to accommodate your request, but we cannot guarantee that you'll be placed in your first-choice session.

Program Dates

8-Week Practicum - at the Center for Mindfulness, Shrewsbury, MA

Summer 2016
June 21 - August 12, 2016
Practicum Opening/Orientation: Monday, June 20, 10:00am - 2:30pm (all Practicum participants must attend)
Summer Practicum Classes: Tuesday mornings, June 21 - August 9
All Day session: Saturday, July 30, 8:45am - 4:30pm (all Practicum participants must attend)
Practicum Closure: Friday, August 12, 10:00am - 2:30pm (all Practicum participants must attend, lunch to follow)
Applications Open: February 19, 2016
Application Deadline: May 8, 2016
* Determinations on Applications will be sent 6 weeks PRIOR to June 21, 2016*

Fall 2016
September 26 - November 18, 2016
Practicum Opening/Orientation: Monday, September 26, 10:00AM - 2:30PM (all Practicum participants must attend)
Fall Practicum Classes: Tuesday mornings September 27 - November 18 or Wednesday afternoons September 28 - November 18
All Day sessions: Saturday, November 5 and Sunday November 6 - 8:45AM - 4:30PM (all Practicum participants must attend)
Practicum Closure: Friday, November 18 10:00AM - 2:30PM (all Practicum participants must attend, lunch to follow)
Applications Open: Friday June 3, 2016
Application Deadline: Friday July 29, 2016
* Determinations on Applications will be sent 6 weeks PRIOR to September 26, 2016*

9-Day Practicum

The 9-day Practicum is designed for professional trainees who live at a significant distance from the Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Practicum participants will:

  • Participate in the Mindfulness Tools Program, an intensive residential program offered by the CFM. This challenging residential workshop is based upon the 8-week MBSR curriculum.
  • Participate in a 4-day intensive professional seminar on integrating the experience of the 5-Day Mindfulness Tools Program through dialogue with your teachers and other Practicum participants.
  • Complete reading assignments relevant to the course prior to attendance.
  • Create brief presentations and reflect upon reading assignments.
  • Guide other seminar participants in mindfulness practices incorporated in the MBSR curriculum.
  • Discuss professional, institutional, and administrative aspects of the work relevant to your background and career path.

May 22 - 31, 2016
Hosted by the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the Westin Snowmass Resort, Snowmass Village, CO
Registration Opens: December 9, 2015
Application Deadline:
 April 8, 2016
* Determinations on Applications will be sent 6 weeks PRIOR to May 22, 2016*

July 17 - 26, 2016
Hosted by the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society and Omega Institute, Rhinebeck, NY
First 5 days at Omega, final 4 days at the CFM in Shrewsbury, MA
Registration Opens: December 1, 2015
Application Deadline: April 22, 2016
* Determinations on Applications will be sent 6 weeks PRIOR to July 17, 2016*

February 3 - 12, 2017
Hosted by the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society
Petaluma, CA
Details TBA

Continuing Education Credits (USA programs only)

How to Apply

To apply for the 8-Week or the 9-Day Practicum, please apply using our online application form. 

You will need to have your CV/Resume available on your computer before you begin filling out the application form because you will attach it to the application form and you cannot submit the form without the CV/Resume. The CV/Resume should be in MS Word or PDF format.  Please note there is no 'save' ability to this form, and it will need to be filled out completely in one session.

Application Fee

After you submit your application, you will be redirected to pay a $50 application fee. The application fee is non-refundable, regardless of your final acceptance status.

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