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.
While many applicants have long standing mediation practices when they apply, the format of MBSR, the unfolding of the program week to week, the unique aspects of dialogue and inquiry along with practice and didactic presentational elements offered, is very different than what one encounters in a meditation hall.
Likewise, while other MBPs such as MBCT rest on the same foundations, each course’s intentions and activities are different enough that the pre-requisites for each training are specific. We also recognize that many come to MBSR teacher-training with years of professional and/or clinical experience, including psychology, psychiatry, yoga training, and other forms of holistic or therapeutic work. The skills and knowledge in these professional areas may be quite helpful in the MBSR teacher-training pathway, but the quality of personal, experiential, and “human to human” interactions available in the MBSR classroom and training programs is rare. The opportunity to investigate one’s own life through the lens of meditation practice, compassion, and wisdom, and within a community of learning unites personal exploration with professional development in a unique way.
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. We can recommend the University of Massachusetts Medical Health Center (UMMHC), as one of our partners, but as long as the MBSR class fulfills the Standards of Practice and is taught in a live format (online or in person), it is acceptable. 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 prefer 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 MBSR 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 formal learning experiences (i.e., not individually or independently 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 is a written document required with the application to MBSR Foundations with the submission of materials for Teacher Certification in MBSR to demonstrate your ability to write and articulate your learning from these pathways.
If you have any questions about your qualifications, please contact us at the email below.
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?
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we have shifted all our trainings online for now, and anticipate including some residential trainings when it is safe to do so. However, the necessity of online training is clear, and we will also continue to offer trainings online to serve a global community. When it is safe, our residential trainings will once again happen around the world in cooperation with our global partners, in our home state of Rhode Island, and throughout the United States.
How long does it take to complete this program?
The prerequisites can be completed within 3-4 months, if you have a daily established mindfulness practice of two years. Once you begin the professional training to become an MBSR teacher, the most common progression is 3-6 years. During this time you will have attended three more qualifying retreats and begun teaching MBSR. Because part of this training is experiential, the time between the formal training components is still very important: time for practice and reflection, in order to more fully digest and integrate what is being learned, and also, towards the middle of the training pathway, time teaching MBSR. 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.