MBSR Teacher Education, Development, and Certification

MBSR_Teacher_Certification-250.jpgMBSR Teacher Education and Development 

The Mindfulness Center at Brown is a global leader in research and education offering a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) teacher training track towards becoming an MBSR Teacher.

Teacher Certification in MBSR

It is with gratitude and joy that we share with you the news that the Mindfulness Center at Brown now offers Teacher Certification in MBSR.

Our Certification track is a three-step process that allows anyone that has completed the MBSR 8-week course and one retreat to embark on a journey to learn how to teach MBSR. The MBSR teacher training programs are for new students and mid-stream learners furthering their professional MBSR education. 

You will learn from widely-known and deeply experienced MBSR instructors and teacher trainers and receive certification from the Mindfulness Center at Brown University.



Recommended Schedule of Programs and Retreats  


Core Programs and Tuition Costs 


Detailed Descriptions of Teacher Training Levels


8-week MBSR Course, One qualifying retreat


1. MBSR Foundations (10 Session or Residential Format) and 2. MBSR Teacher Advancement Intensive . 

Other Requirements  

1. Qualifying Retreat, Total of two retreats. About Retreats

On Taking MBSR: Taking an MBSR class is a pre-requisite for MBSR Foundations. MBSR is an 8-week program that is available four times a year and can be taken in person or live-online. This prerequisite is required before applying for any of our MBSR Foundations programs, in either format: MBSR Foundations 10 Sessions (online or in-person) or MBSR Foundations Residential. Taking MBSR before beginning your training to teach MBSR provides you with the opportunity to experience the class fully as a participant and to have a direct experience of the value of the class. 

As an integral part of the MBSR Foundations program, 10 Sessions, you also attend the related MBSR class. This will be, at least, the second time you will take the class. What transpires in the MBSR class each week becomes an essential part of the discussions in the Foundations program, in terms of personal practice, group dynamics and teacher choice points. You participate in the MBSR program as both a participant and an observer as a means of developing comprehension of the MBSR curriculum, teaching competencies and  the underpinnings of the program. 

As an integral part of the MBSR Foundations Residential program, you also attend the five-day Framework for Mindful Living program. What transpires in the Framework program becomes an essential part of the discussions in the Foundations seminar, in terms of personal practice, group dynamics and teacher choice points. You participate in the Framework for Mindful Living program as both a participant and an observer as a means of developing comprehension of the MBSR curriculum, teaching competencies and  the underpinnings of the program


Your name listed on the Brown University Mindfulness Center website,  in the MBSR Teacher Registry as having completed:  “MBSR Teacher – Training Level 1”  
Click here to submit your name and contact information if you have completed these requirements.  

After completing these requirements you begin teaching 8-week, in-person MBSR programs. 


Successful competition of “MBSR Teacher – Training Level 1”


1. MBSR Curriculum Study Group and Skill-Building Workshop (engage in this group process in the early phases of teaching) and 2. MBSR Individual Mentoring

Other Requirements  

One Qualifying Retreat (Total of three retreats)


Your name listed on the Brown University Mindfulness Center website, in the MBSR Teacher Registry as having completed:  “MBSR Teacher – Training Level 2”

Continue teaching 8-week, in-person MBSR program 


PLEASE NOTE: The next two submission deadline dates, Jan 31, 2020 and April 30, 2020, are the final deadlines for certification review based on prior certification requirements through UMass Medical School's Center for Mindfulness. The September 2020 submission deadline will begin the new format for certification review. 

Information for what is required to submit for the Jan 31, 2020 and April 30, 2020 dates can be found on page two of this pdf document.

2020 Winter Teacher Certification in MBSR dates
Submission deadline is January 31, 2020. Review of all materials will be completed by April 30, 2020.

2020 Spring Teacher Certification in MBSR dates
Submission deadline is April 30, 2020.  Review of all materials will be completed by August 30, 2020. Note: The review period is extended due to summer holiday and vacation times, in order to make sure all reviews are completed in a timely way. 

Submit your information and apply 
Submit your information and apply for MBSR Teacher Certification by clicking this link and completing the application

Submit Payment
To submit payment for the application please click here

Before applying for review of your materials, the following prerequisites are required:

  • Successful competition of “MBSR Teacher – Training Level 2”
  • Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction in Medicine, Practice & Science*
  • Four qualifying teacher-led, silent retreats
  • Successfully completed teaching six (6) MBSR courses 

Award of Teacher Certification in MBSR:  Your name listed on Brown University Mindfulness Center website in the MBSR Teacher Registry as “Certified MBSR Teacher.”

More information about Teacher Certification in MBSR

*This course may be taken at any time during your sequence.

Please contact us at [email protected] if you have other questions.  

Continuing Education  

  • MBSR:  Cultivating Depth in Teaching
  • The Art of Inquiry in MBSR  
  • Mindfulness in Relationship
  • Medicine, Meditation and Neuroscience (Strasbourg CE program for clinicians)
  • Coming Soon- Professional certificate programs grounded in MBSR, designed and tailored for healthcare clinicians and professionals, educators, and leaders

Transfer Application

If you have started your MBSR Teacher Training at another institution and are interested in completing your training through the Mindfulness Center at Brown University, please complete this Transfer Application.

Please fill out the Transfer Form 

Do I need to take MBSR before I apply to this professional training program?

Yes. Successful completion of the MBSR course prior to your application to the teacher training is required. If you haven't yet taken MBSR, go here for information and/or to register for one of our classes. If it has been more than 8 years since you took the MBSR course, we strongly recommend that you take it again before applying for MBSR teacher training.

Do I need to have taken MBSR with the Mindfulness Center at Brown? 

No. Having taken MBSR from a well-qualified teacher elsewhere is sufficient. If you have questions about whether the MBSR class you took meets this prerequisite, contact us at the email below.

Do I need to have a personal mindfulness practice to apply for this program?                          

Yes. We recommend a minimum of two years of regular formal mindfulness practice for entrance into the training program. If you don't yet have a mindfulness practice and would like to develop one, go here to learn about our mindfulness courses for individuals.

Do I need a graduate degree to take this program?

The graduate degree requirement is one avenue of assessing a potential MBSR teacher's level of critical thinking, writing, and speaking skills, a dedication to an area of study, research or professional development separate from mindfulness or meditation experience.

Often, the learning experiences that reflect these capacities occur outside more formal, academic venues. For example: Certificates in coaching, education, or writing; higher level yoga teacher trainings, massage therapy or bodywork trainings; or other non-academic but rigorous public learning experiences (i.e., not individually directed) may be equivalent to this requirement.

You are welcome to list your trainings to see if they would fulfill this equivalency prior to your anticipated training. In addition, there will be a brief written document required with the submission of materials for Teacher Certification in MBSR to demonstrate your ability to write and articulate your learning from these pathways.

If I began my MBSR teacher training elsewhere, may I continue to complete my training through the Mindfulness Center at Brown?

Yes. We welcome those have begun training at other programs and would like to continue and receive certification through the Brown Mindfulness Center. Please contact us at the email below to speak with someone who can help determine where you would enter the MBSR teacher training track at the Mindfulness Center at Brown. 

Where do the trainings happen?

We offer both in-person and live-online courses.  Our residential trainings happen around the world in partnership with our global partners, in our home state of Rhode Island, and throughout the United States. Our live-online courses include the MBSR Curriculum Study Group and Skills Building Workshop and Individual Mentoring.

How long does it take to complete this program?

The prerequisites can be completed within 3-4 months. Once you begin the professional training to become an MBSR teacher, the most common progression is 3-4 years.  During this time you will have attended three silent retreats and begun teaching MBSR. Because part of this training is experiential, some of the time is spent teaching, meditating and reflecting in order to more fully digest and integrate what is being learned. The program should not take more than five years to complete. 

In what language are the courses in other countries taught?

All courses held in the US are taught in English. Global Collaborative trainings are often taught in the language of the host country; some include English-speaking teachers; and some are taught in English with simultaneous translation provided by reliable and skilled translators. Please check the details of each program, especially those being offered outside of the US.