Mind-Body Medicine


Saybrook Mind-Body Medicine Instructor Martha Menard Publishes Mixed Methods Study on Quality of Education in Massage Therapy

MBM Instructor Martha Menard

Mixed-methods research combines the best features of qualitative and quantitative research method in a single study.  Healthcare offers many fruitful opportunities for applying mixed methods, and Saybrook University's School of Mind-Body Medicine has promoted mixed methods for its doctoral students' research.

A recently published study by Saybrook University School of Mind-body Medicine faculty member Martha Menard, PhD, LMT, illustrates how mixed methods can be applied to topics in healthcare. The study is a national evaluation of the current quality of education in massage therapy, and was funded by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation. Multiple data sources included quantitative educational outcomes from the National Center for Education Statistics, such as tuition costs, graduation rates, job placement rates, median loan amounts, and loan repayment rates, with a qualitatively developed survey of educators from multiple healthcare disciplines. The survey question and answer choices were based on individual and focus group interviews, and  included several open-ended questions.

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Saybrook Mind-Body Medicine Student Featured on TV, Authors Chapter for Oxford University Press

James Cahill

Saybrook MBM student Jim Cahill was recently featured in a health segment on a regional television news program, discussing his program: Mindfulness-Based Biofeedback Therapy™ (MBBT). Scripps Center for Integrative Medicine (SCIM) asked Jim to represent the organization and discuss the effects of multitasking on health and well-being, in conjunction with a Women's Health Expo organized by SCIM. He also recently completed a chapter on pain management under contract for Oxford University Press, which describes some of the methods he uses in MBBT.

Jim's MBBT program combines evidence-based psychophysiology with classical Eastern mindfulness practices to create a unique, effective, and grounded training system. Clients are trained to adhere daily to a practical set of self-regulation methods for training foundational nervous system responses, while observing internal states coupled with objective feedback from medical monitors. Eastern mind training methods are used to cultivate understanding and expertise in sensing and controlling the shifts in subjective states associated with desirable objective shifts in physiological states.

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Charlene Conlin and Carleen Phelps Complete a Collaborative Doctoral Dissertation on Males and Females Successfully Managing Type 2 Diabetes through Lifestyle Change

Carrie Phelps and Char Conlin at Saybrook University Graduation


Charlene Conlin and Carleen Phelps have just completed a collaborative dissertation as part of their doctoral studies in the Saybrook University School of Mind-Body Medicine.  This was the first collaborative dissertation in the School of Mind-Body Medicine.

Collaborative work is abundant in the publication of academic research papers, especially in the healthcare sector, where meaningful research studies frequently require coordination among several disciplines and settings. Nevertheless, collaboration is rare in the doctoral dissertation process. One Saybrook collaborative dissertation was completed by two psychology students, Leila Kozak and Dorothy Mandel, within Integrative Health Studies in 2006, but until now none had taken place within the School of Mind-Body Medicine

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School of MBM Instructor Dr. Lisa Kelly and PhD Student Teresa von Kerckerink Collaborate on ISSEEM Presentation on Shamanic Healing

Photos from ISSEEM Shamanic Seminar


In June 2014, Saybrook University School of Mind-Body Medicine PhD candidate, Teresa von Kerckerink and MBM faculty member Dr. Lisa Kelly collaborated in presenting a 90 minute seminar on the lived experience of shamanic healing at the International Society of Subtle Energy and Energy Medicine conference titled: Seen and Unseen Realities.

Teresa began the workshop by presenting the findings of her first person Hermeneutic Phenomenological pilot study on the lived experience of the use of the shamanic sacred plant medicine, San Pedro. A lively discussion followed, where participants asked numerous questions and the group discussed the role of altered states of consciousness and energy medicine in shamanic healing. Following this discussion Dr. Kelly presented an overview of her experience with shamanic healing in Peru, and then together Teresa and Dr. Kelly facilitated a shamanic healing ritual with the attendees.

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Webinar: Multicultural Competency for Mind-Body Medicine

Multicultural Competency

Join us for a Webinar on August 27.

Dr. Deborah Wilcox holds a master's degree in public administration, a master's in clinical community counseling, and a doctorate in counseling education. She has previously served as an instructor at Kent State University, the University of Dayton, Union Institute, and the University of  Cincinnati, providing instruction in multi-cultural counseling, adolescent development, public health administration, and grant writing. She is now on the faculty at Saybrook University's School of Mind-Body Medicine.

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Biofeedback Provides Tools to Guide Effective Use of Medication

Jay Gunkelman, author and expert on quantitative analysis of EEG


Biofeedback – When a behavioral problem such as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is diagnosed, selecting medication to best treat it can become a matter of trial and error. Analyzing brain patterns by using electroencephalography (EEG) can help predict which medicine will offer the best result and thus lower the risk of adverse drug events. Recognizing brain patterns can be a better guide to medication use than psychiatric diagnosis based on the DSM-V.

The article “Medication Prediction with Electroencephalography Phenotypes and Biomarkers” in the current issue of the journal Biofeedback offers evidence that quantitative EEG assessment can refine the selection of medications by detecting brain patterns. Author Jay Gunkelman uses the example of a 7-year-old child diagnosed with ADHD.

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Saybrook University Shines at National Wellness Conference

Saybrook Students and School Chair Moss at Poster Session

This year, a number of Saybrook University faculty, students, and alumni participated in the National Wellness conference, presenting on everything from coaching to the multicultural approaches to wellness.

The National Wellness Conference is a major event annually in the worlds of health promotion, health coaching, nurse coaching, and wellness education.  This year's  conference took place in Minneapolis, from June 23 to 26, 2014.  The conference theme was Reshaping the Wellness Landscape: The Next Five Years.  Keynote presentations were made by several major figures in the wellness world, including Mary Jo Kreitzer. the founder and director of the University of Minnesota's Center for Spirituality and Healing, Michael Arloski, a leader in the world of wellness coaching, and David L. Katz, the founder and director of Yale University's Prevention Research Center.

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Watch Saybrook faculty member Donna Rockwell discuss mindfullness with Katie Couric!


Donna Rockwell, who teaches Mindfulness, Meditation, and Health at Saybrook University made an appearance on "Katie" last week to talk about the health benefits of mindfulness in daily life - and how to achieve it.

Dr. Rockwell conducts research in mindfulness, and is a staff psychologist at the Center for Creative Living.

Read her essay on Mindfulness for The New Existentialists here

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Dr. Donna Rockwell, Saybrook School of Mind-Body Medicine Instructor, to Discuss Mindfulness on the Katie Show

Dr. Donna Rockwell, Member of Faculty, Saybrook School of Mind-Body Medicine

Saybrook University Mind-Body Medicine faculty member Dr. Donna Rockwell has conducted mixed-method research on the affect of mindfulness practice on graduate students in a clinical psychology program, and has seen in the outcome data the profound influence that mindfulness can have on psychotherapists, both in the work they do with clients and patients, as well as on their ability to implement self-care. Her research thesis was, “If I can’t sit with myself, how can I sit with another?” 

Now Dr. Rockwell will be appearing on the Katie Couric show on ABC-TV on July 8 to talk about mindfulness, its value, and why it seems to be a current craze. 

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Member of School of Mind-Body Medicine Faculty to Serve on Board for Interdisciplinary Coalition of North American Phenomenologists (ICNAP)

Luann Fortune, PhD, School of Mind-Body Medicine


Luann Fortune, PhD, is a member of the teaching faculty in Saybrook’s School of Mind-Body Medicine, and serves as the School's Director of Instructional Excellence, overseeing course development and online teaching.  Dr. Fortune  just returned from the annual conference of the Interdisciplinary Coalition of North American Phenomenologists (ICNAP). During the conference, she was elected to serve on ICNAP’s Executive Committee where she assumes the role of Treasurer effective immediately.

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