Derek Scott, RSW, Cert IFS Therapist

Event Speaker

Derek Scott, RSW, Cert. IFS Therapist


Derek Scott is the founder of IRSCA, an organization dedicated to teaching the Internal Family Systems (IFS) model to mental health professionals in Canada and beyond. He has worked in the field of counselling/therapy for over 35 years, including 15 working exclusively as an IFS therapist. He is a popular guest lecturer in the department of Thanatology at the University of Western Ontario and has presented at numerous national and international conferences.

As a young counsellor his work of 18 years in the AIDS field afforded him much learning from, and a greater understanding of individuals from the LGBTQI2 and First Nation communities as well as street-involved, drug-using and other marginalised individuals such as sex-trade workers.

Incorporating methodologies from his background and training in gestalt therapy, psychodrama and sociometry, Derek brings a wealth of expertise in working with groups. He is known for his combination of compassion, insight and humour as well as his ability to facilitate engagement with the group process.


Internal Family Systems: The Vulnerable (parts of the) Mental Health Professional

Speaker: Derek Scott, RSW, Certified IFS Therapist

This session will provide an introduction to the Internal Family Systems (IFS) model. Attendees will learn about shifting the mental health paradigm from one that is rooted in the biomedical model of disease to one that acknowledges that we are all, at our core, compassionate human beings, with some parts in extreme places as a response to distressing life events.

Through a variety of teaching modalities including experiential exercises, guided meditations, didactic teaching and an annotated video of a complete IFS session by founder Richard Schwartz PhD., attendees will have the opportunity to experience their own parts as well as understand how the IFS model may be applied in their work. There will be a live demonstration of an IFS session and ongoing Q&A throughout the day.

In keeping with the conference theme, various “parts” of the therapist that contribute to our work with vulnerable populations will be explored. Participants will be taught several techniques for both accessing their own Self – in and out of session - and facilitating client’s access to their Self.

Key Take-aways

  1. Understand how multiplicity is the basis for the personality system
  2. Recognize their own “parts” that inform their work with vulnerable populations
  3. Gain clarify on how Self-led healing occurs and the role of the therapist in trusting and facilitating the internal work of the client’s system