International integrity

MTI is part of a global network of teacher training organizations which are working towards international agreement on mindfulness teacher training pathways, standards and certification protocols so that the standard of MBI teaching can be fostered and maintained.

Relationship with the Center for Mindfulness, UMass?

This important question often comes up for those who are wishing to train in MBSR in Australia and nearby countries.

The CFM has been the mother of the powerful transmission of it’s profound mindfulness based work, initiated by Jon Kabat-Zinn’s vision, for over thirty years.  It is through the CFM’s careful stewardship that MBIs have flourished, and grown across the world.  MTIA teachers have strong personal and professional relationships with the CFM  and have been involved in ongoing training, supervision and collaboration over the years, which is continuing.  

For many years, the CFM did informally support Timothea Goddard (one of the MTI directors) to offer MBSR training in this part of the world and this Australian-based training did allow people to go on to attend the other CFM trainings and to get certified.  This has now changed as it is a time of defining and refining relationships in the training world of the MBIs and many training organizations (including the CFM and the MTIA) are in the process of deciding on an affiliation model which will work for each organisation.

To be clear, at this point, the CFM does not accredit any other training programs in MBSR (except the one run by a senior CMF teacher, Bob Stahl, in California.)   Neither do they recognize any aspects of other trainings across the world; to be certified by the CFM, you now have to attend each level of the CFM training pathway overseas.

Moving forward

As stated above, the MTI is participating in the process of creating an international network of teacher training organizations of which the CFM will be a member, in order to get clearer on issues of standards and recognition.   The UK MBI community (at Oxford, Bangor and Exeter universities) has been initiating this and the CFM and many other training organizations in the world will be involved in these meetings happening this year.   

We have established an Asia Pacific chapter of this world network with colleagues who are offering MBI teacher training organizations in Melbourne, Hong Kong, Taiwan and S. Korea.   This group involves senior MBSR teachers and who have been trained and certified by the CFM, and who offer supervision for the CFM, and MBCT teachers who have been trained by Mark Williams in the UK.

Shared world standards

In the last year the organizations involved in the international network (including the CFM and MTIA) have moved towards adopting a standard tool for the assessment of competency of teachers (the MBI-TAC) so that standards of teaching can be maintained across the world.  We hope that the certification process of teachers can be a collaborative one, with assessors of any applicant being assessed by members of an international panel.

Please be in touch with Timothea Goddard to discuss choices about your pathway of training or any other concerns.

Mindfulness Training Institute - Australia & New Zealand (MTI)