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Behavioral health therapies and services are dramatically evolving and growing. New technologies, new approaches and new brain science influence and improve how therapists shape their approach to treating their clients.

How We Impact Behavioral Health

We Use Evidenced-based Findings to Provide State-of-the-art Therapy

As behavioral health scientists, we create new knowledge and use the latest evidence-based findings to inform our therapy in practice.

Science-Practitioner Model

Our approach is based on the Scientific-Practitioner Model, an ongoing feedback loop where research improves practice and our clinical practice informs our research.

Integrative Systems Therapy Model

Focusing directly on the concerns that families, couples and individuals bring to therapy, Integrative Systemic Therapy (IST) values client participation in planning therapy and seeking solutions to their concerns. Although focusing initially on straight forward, direct changes in interaction, thinking and feeling, IST also provides tools to systematically address the broad range of more complex factors that may interfere with problem solving. IST is a 21st century therapy that attends carefully to patterns in relationships and guides clients and therapists in deciding what to do when what they are doing is not working.


We are an acknowledged leader in relationship-based behavioral health. Our work benefits not only our clients, but the entire field, as we publish and share our research to a national and international audience. In fact, three of the leading journals in couple and family therapy are edited by scholars at The Family Institute.

Innovative Research

Through The Center for Applied Psychological and Family Studies, we conduct innovative research as part of Northwestern University.

As part of a growing portfolio of research projects, we are conducting a series of studies under the Psychotherapy Change project that examine different aspects of client change. This project has led to the development of a measurement and feedback tool designed to track the client change process, illuminating how clients and therapists partner to see change and improve treatment.

Learn more about our Academic Research

We Educate the Behavioral Health Leaders of Tomorrow

The alumni of our TFI Master's programs go on to become the leading experts in Marriage and Family Therapy and Counseling.

Students who receive their clinical training at The Family Institute work with clients from all walks of life, giving them the advantage of connecting and relating to the widest range of people, situations and issues.

Educators Since 1965

Our educators have extensive, real world experience in many different areas of practice, and many are recognized leaders in their specialties.

We are one of the leaders in the field of relationship-based behavioral health education and our reputation ranks us among the top in the country.

Real-World Experiences

Our educators are not just in the classroom, but in the real world, providing therapy to clients daily, so our students have the unique benefit of being taught and guided by scientist-practitioners. This enables our faculty to provide the most hands-on experiential learning possible both at The Family Institute and in the community.

Our long-standing partnership with Northwestern University means we are powerfully linked to one of the leading academic universities in the world.

Learn more about our Graduate Education

We Provide Evidence-Based Therapy

We are an empirically informed, theoretically grounded and culturally responsive multi-specialty group of behavioral health clinicians. We understand people in the context of their relationships, both past and present, leading to healthy growth and brighter futures.

Our work is grounded in the latest scientific research, allowing us to bring evidence-based ideas into a clinical setting, and guides our ability to stay current and leading edge.

Our therapies focus on behavioral health as an integral part of the whole health of an individual and family.

Customized Therapy Plans

Recognizing the uniqueness of each client, we create a customized therapy plan that often combines different therapies together to provide holistic support of our clients.

Collaboration & Diversity of Knowledge

We believe the mental health of families, couples and individuals plays a vital role in the strength of our communities. When you work with one of us, you work with all of us.

We take a collaborative approach to therapy, sharing our knowledge and our skills with our colleagues to ensure the best possible outcomes.

Behind each clinician at The Family Institute is our team of 75 clinicians allowing for ongoing information sharing, consultation and effective referrals. This team approach is most evident when multiple therapists work as a therapeutic team with multiple members of one family.

We connect in the ways our clients want to connect, whether in person, by phone or even digitally.

Learn About Our Therapists

We Partner with Our Clients

Life is complicated and life transitions are often hard. We are here to partner with you to see change and help you through life’s challenges.

Behavioral health is a key part of everyone’s life; it is part of an individual’s whole health.

We Define Family the Way You Define Family

Today, family and relationships take many forms. Understanding family and relationship dynamics play a critical role in discovering your best path forward.

Whether we’re talking about ethnicity, sexuality or lifestyle, diversity is one our our core values.

Learn about our Therapy Services & Programs