Brian Rasmussen

Associate Professor Emeritus

Social Work

Research Summary

Research and teaching interests: Clinical social work theory and practice; contemporary psychodynamic theory; supportive psychotherapy; clinical supervision.


 Dr. Rasmussen has over 25 years of clinical experience with individuals, families and groups, primarily in out-patient psychiatric settings. His primary academic interest is clinical social work theory, and in particular, the application of psychodynamic theories to practice. In collaboration with Dr. Daniel Salhani, a theoretical project is underway to integrate social and psychodynamic theories for clinical practice.

He is also an adjunct associate professor at Smith College School for Social Work in Northampton, Massachusetts where he teaches clinical social work theory. Dr. Rasmussen is a consulting editor for the journals Psychoanalytic Social Work, Smith College Studies in Social Work, and Journal of Social Work Practice.

Dr. Rasmussen maintains a private practice in Kelowna that focuses on psychotherapy and clinical consultation.

Research Interests & Projects

Social work clinical theory
The teaching-learning relationship
Mental health
Vicarious trauma
Clinical process

Selected Publications & Presentations

  • Kealy, D., Goodman, G., Rasmussen, B., Weiderman, R., Ogrodniczuk, J. (2017).  Therapists’ perspectives on optimal treatment for pathological narcissism.  Personality Disorders: Theory, Research and Treatments, 8(1), 35-45.
  • Rasmussen, B. & Garran, A.M. (2016). In the Line of Duty: Racism and Health Care Workers.  Social Work, 61(2), 175-177.
  • Garran, A. M. & Rasmussen, B. (2014). Safety in the classroom: Reconsidered. Journal of Teaching in Social Work, 34(4).
  • Rasmussen, B. & Bliss, S. (2014). Beneath the surface: An exploration of neurobiological alterations in therapists working with trauma. Smith College Studies in Social Work, 84:332-349.
  • Ikebuchi, J. & Rasmussen, B. (2014) The role of emotions in teaching and learning social work practice. Journal of Teaching in Social Work,34(3).
  • Bliss, S. & Rasmussen, B. (2013). Reflections on contemporary psychodynamic theory in clinical social work. Journal of Social Work Practice, 27(3), 211-215.
  • Rasmussen, B. (2013). Making sense of Walt: A psychoanalytic understanding of racism. Psychoanalytic Social Work, 20(1) 50-61.
  • Oliffe, J.L., Rasmussen, B., Bottorff, J.L., Kelly, M.T., Galdas, P., Phinney, A., & Ogrodniczuk, J., (2013). Masculinities, Work, and Retirement Among Older Men Who Experience Depression. Qualitative Health Research, 23(12),
  • Campbell, H. & Rasmussen, B. (2012). Riding third: Social work in ambulance work. Social Work and Health Care, 37(1),
  •  Emond, S. & Rasmussen, B. (2012). The status of psychiatric inpatient group therapy: Past, present and future. Social Work with Groups, 35(1), 68-91.
  •  Kealy, D. & Rasmussen, B. (2012) Veiled and vulnerable: The other side of grandiose narcissism. Clinical Social Work Journal, 40(1), 356-365.
  •  Rasmussen, B. & Salhani, S. (2010). A contemporary Kleinian contribution to understanding racism. Social Service Review84(3), 333-350.
  •  Rasmussen, B. & Salhani (2010). Some social implications of psychoanalytic theory: A social work perspective. Journal of Social Work Practice, 24(2), 209-225.
  •  Rasmussen, B. & Salhani, D. (2008).  Resurrecting Erich Fromm. Smith College Studies in Social Work, 78,201-225.
  •  Rasmussen, B. & Mishna, M. (2008).  A fine balance: Instructor self-disclosure in the classroom.  Journal of Teaching in Social Work, 28(1/2, 191-207.
  • Rasmussen, B.  (2007) No refuge: An exploratory survey of nightmares, dreams, and sleep patterns in women dealing with relationship violence.  Violence Against Women.13, 314-322.
  • Rasmussen, B.  (2005). An intersubjective perspective on vicarious trauma and its impact on the clinical process.  Journal of Social Work Practice, 19, 19-30.
  • Rasmussen, B. (2005). Have we learned from our mistakes? Psychoanalytic Social Work,12,73-79.
  • Rasmussen, B., & Mishna, F. (2003). The relevance of contemporary psychoanalytic theories to teaching social work. Smith College Studies in Social Work, 74, 1, 31-47.
  • Rasmussen, B. (2002). Linking metaphor and dreams in clinical practice. Psychoanalytic Social Work. 9 (2), 71-87.
  • Mishna, F. & Rasmussen, B. (2001). The learning relationship: Working through disjunctions in the classroom. Clinical Social Work Journal29(4), 387-399.
  • Rasmussen, B. (2000). Poetic truths and clinical reality: Client experience of the use of metaphor by therapists. Smith College Studies in Social Work, Special Issue, Clinical Practice Evaluation: Conceptual Issues, Empirical Studies, and Practice Implications, 70(2), 355-373.
  • Rasmussen, B. (1999). Joining group psychotherapy: Developmental considerations. International Journal of Group Psychotherapy, 49(4), 512-528.
  • Rasmussen, B. & Angus, L. (1997). Modes of interaction in psychodynamic psychotherapy with borderline and non-borderline clients: A qualitative analysis.  Journal of Analytic Social Work, 4(4), 53-73.
  • Rasmussen, B. & Angus L. (1996). Metaphor in psychodynamic psychotherapy with borderline and non-borderline clients: A qualitative analysis. Psychotherapy, 33(4), 521 – 530.
  •  Rasmussen, B. (1995). The differential use of metaphor in psychotherapy. Clinical Social Work Journal, 23(2), 139-149.



  • Rasmussen, B. (2015) [Review of the book Social Work in a Digital Society By Sue Watling and Jim Rogers]. London, Sage. Clinical Social Work Journal, 43(2), 254-255.
  • Rasmussen, B. (2010).  [Revew of the book Advanced Clinical Social Work Practice: Relational Principles and Techniques]  Smith College Studies in Social Work.
  • Rasmussen, B. (2007).  It takes two to tango: The case for Relational Theory in Clinical Social Work.  Perspectives, 20, 4, 6-7.
  • Rasmussen, B. (2006). [Review of the book Psychodynamic Social Work].  Smith College Studies in Social Work.  76,3, 93-94.
  • Rasmussen, B. (2005).  [Review of the book Relational Psychotherapy: A primer].  Smith College Studies in Social Work, 75,1.
  • Rasmussen, B. (1998)  Unfaithful Angels: A down to earth perspective.  Perspectives, 20 (2), 14-15.
  • Rasmussen, B. (1998). [Review of the book Touch in Psychotherapy].  Perspectives20(3), 14.


Apologies, but no results were found.