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Olds, D.D. (2000). Columbia University Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research. Neuropsychoanalysis, 2(1):109-110.

(2000). Neuropsychoanalysis, 2(1):109-110

Columbia University Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research

David D. Olds, M.D.

This time, as promised in my last report, I will write about the third leg in the theoretical triangle of cognitive science, psychoanalytic research and human development.

The major change that has occurred at Columbia, in this arena, is the beginning of a child psychoanalysis program and a parent-infant program. These endeavors are in their own infancy, and they show promise of future importance. They have brought with them major changes in the Center's curriculum. The importance of developmental issues to psychoanalytic theory has been recognized only in the last few years. The information pouring in from developmental researchers is massive. It has required major curriculum changes just to provide introductory material.

We have added a full year of classes on chronological and maturational development from infancy to adolescence, run by Karen Gilmore and Susan Coates. We have an eight-week elective on attachment theory, open to other institutes, and taught by Susan Coates.

One thing we have learned in teaching this material is the incredible teaching value of videotapes. There are now many tapes derived from attachment experiments, infant observation work, and parent-infant research, all of which show what cannot be fully described in words. One sees psychodynamics happening. In the first-year development course we use tapes to illustrate issues of attachment, cognitive development, affect, and self-regulation, and parent-child interactions. In our reading group we have had Beatrice Beebe introduce her videotaped work, and Edward Tronick present and discuss a video of mothers' first meetings with their newborn infants, with particular attention to the idea of the holding environment.

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