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The Brain in Love: The Neurology of Intimate Behavior

Over the last 20 years, advances in neuro-imaging have allowed scientists to directly observe brain functions while humans are engaging in intimate behavior. This research has led to an improved understanding of how our brain functions when we are interacting with our children, mates and close friends.

Join us on Thursday, July 18, as Dr. Harvey Joanning leads a continuing education workshop on the neurology of intimate behavior. Dr. Joanning will incorporate his own research findings and experience working with individuals, couples, and families to prepare participants to provide therapy to their clients. Dr. Joanning will:

  • Provide participants with a basic understanding of neurons, brain circuits and hormones that influence behavior, cognition and emotions
  • Familiarize participants with the hormonal cascades involved in positive and negative interactions with loved ones
  • Describe how the brain affects parenting and the behavior of children and adolescents
  • Introduce participants to brain pathways involved in close, interpersonal interactions

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Mug JoanningDr. Harvey Joanning

Dr. Harvey Joanning trained in counseling with a specialization in marriage and family therapy and received his doctorate from the University of Iowa in 1973. His specializations include marriage and family therapy, theories and philosophy of science, vocational psychology, life sciences, neuropsychology, and research methodology.

He is a professional volunteer for the Alzheimer’s Association and the American Tinnitus Association. He helps families learn to care for a member with Alzheimer’s disease and trains health care workers to assist families of Alzheimer’s patients. He also helps individuals deal with troublesome “head noises” such as ringing in the ears.

Dr. Joanning teaches at the undergraduate and graduate level and regularly provides continuing education workshops to health and mental health professionals. He has been awarded the Helen LeBaron Hilton Teaching Award by Iowa State University. He was awarded Fellow status by the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy and received that organization’s Outstanding Postgraduate Research Contribution Award for his research on couple communication training. He is a Licensed Psychologist in Iowa and a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Alabama and Iowa.

Dr. Joanning is an alumnus of Briar Cliff.

This event, the first workshop of a two-part series, is co-sponsored by Briar Cliff's Center for Justice, Center for Health Care Initiatives, Division of Social and Behavior Sciences, and the Departments of Social Work and Nursing.

Brochure Brain Workshop


DATE: Thursday, July 18
(Registration deadline is June 30)

TIME: 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
(check-in at 8:15 a.m.)

PLACE: Stark Student Center

COST: $85 (includes morning refreshments and lunch)

Schedule of Events

Registration Form (PDF)


Briar Cliff is offering continuing education units (CEUs) and hours at this workshop. 

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