About this course

How do you help people who aren’t sure they want help? 

How do you support people to make change when at times they are not sure they really want to change? 

This course presents an overview of the theory and practice of Motivational Interviewing – a client-centred approach to strengthen their own motivation to change and support them in making changes. In this unique course, the theory and practices of Motivational Interviewing are underpinned and complimented by the concept of Mentalization and a description of how such work can be supported by the maintenance of a mentalizing stance. In this highly practical course, participants will be given the opportunity to practice motivational interviewing and mentalizing skills.

The course will cover
  • The ethos/principles of MI 
  • The cycle of change and how to apply it to your work 
  • Mentalizing and the mentalizing stance: how they relate to MI and cycle of change 
  • Principles of Motivational work 
  • Recognising and working with ambivalence 
  • Recognising and responding to sustain/change talk in ourselves and with clients 

This is a live online training, with trainers present throughout. The training consists of an engaging combination of live teaching, group discussion, skills practice, and interactive online activities.

Who is this course suitable for?

This course is suitable for all practitioners who work with children, young people and families in the areas of health, social care, education and youth services. It will be of particular interest to those who would like to introduce MI interventions into their existing practice and already use mentalization based practices in their work. But prior knowledge and experience of mentalizing approaches and MI are not required.

Aims of the course

The course aims to help practitioners in a variety of settings to support people to engage in help and make change by: 

  • learning the core principles of MI and how they connect with mentalizing and mentalization based practice 
  • developing skills in client-centred communication and maintaining a mentalizing stance 
  • develop skills that address ambivalence and elicit clients’ own motivation to change

Places on this course have been funded by Health Education England.

If you are based in London or South East England, and have received an invitation from The Anna Freud Centre, you are eligible to attend this training at no cost to yourself.

If you would like to book more than one place on this training course, for example for your eligible colleagues, please contact Rhys Owen at

System requirements for online training

The online platform Zoom will be used to deliver this training. Prior to booking on, please ensure you meet the system requirements so you're able to join this training. 

Before the training, please test your equipment is working by going to and follow the instructions.

The Anna Freud Centre brings together those with a stake in the mental health of children and young people. Please subscribe to our mailing list to receive a bi-monthly e-newsletter and occasional updates about the Centre's training and events. 

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