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Saybrook Graduate School and Research Center, a San Francisco, California based 'distance learning' institution (originally founded in 1971 as the Humanistic Psychology Institute), is geared to providing a personalized, mentored educational experience for graduate students. Saybrook specializes in the fields of psychology, organizational systems, and human science, and offers master's and doctoral degrees, as well as a range of professional certification programs.

Humanistic approach

Saybrook was founded on a fundamental humanistic belief, that human consciousness at an individual and societal level is a work in progress, for which each person is responsible. The concept is the ethical, pedagogical and disciplinary foundation of the school's programs.


Saybrook traces its origins to a 1964 conference at Old Saybrook, Connecticut. The event helped establish humanistic psychology as a legitimate movement embraced by scholars from a variety of disciplines, including Rollo May, Clark Moustakas and James Bugental. The humanistic psychology movement became a response to mainstream psychology's lack of interest or involvement in human centered treatment and therapy as well as a critique of the standard psychology practices of that time.

In 1969, Dr. Eleanor Criswell, a professor at California State University, Sonoma, proposed that an educational program be established to provide an innovative, learner-centered and rigorous educational environment devoted to humanistic psychology and research.

Led by Dr. Criswell and pioneer somatics researcher Dr. Thomas Hanna under the name The Humanistic Psychology Institute, the school began by offering graduate courses in humanistic psychology. In 1971, a master's program was added, and a doctoral program in 1972. Based on the humanistic tradition, Saybrook has evolved as a 'learner-centered' educational environment.

In honor of the 1964 Connecticut conference, the school changed its name to Saybrook Institute. Founders who remained with the Institute included Old Saybrook conference participants Rollo May, Clark Moustakas and James Bugental, all of whom served as members of the Saybrook faculty.

Student body

As of 2006, Saybrook has grown to an enrollment over five hundred full time equivalent students.


All faculty members have doctorates, in most cases earned from leading research universities. Among the many distinguished faculty members at Saybrook is Natalie Rogers, PhD, the daughter of Carl Rogers, the developer of person centered therapy and a leader in the humanistic psychology movement that led to the founding of the school.

Research Center

Saybrook’s Research Center is a community of scholars and practitioners committed to the humanistic tradition and exploring its impact on all aspects of human life. Members come from the fields of psychology, politics, international relations, religion, development, business, and health sciences. Currently, the Center's director is Lorne M. Buchman, PhD.

See also

External link

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