Our Mission

The Life Space Crisis Intervention Institute trains staff to turn crises into learning opportunities and build trusting relationships with children and youth.

Background and Development of LSCI

Life Space Crisis intervention grew from the creative contributions of Fritz Redl and David Wineman’s theory of Life Space Interviewing (LSI) developed for treatment of delinquent youth in the 1950s. Redl and Wineman were the first to document using crisis as a core therapeutic component of treatment. To accomplish this goal, they trained the staff who spent the most time with young people to use LSI during a crisis and to become central professional members of the treatment team. The interest in LSI grew, gaining key contributors who shaped the concepts for broad applications across a variety of settings.

William Morse and Nicholas Long brought LSI into the schools. These skills were found essential as students increasingly bring intense emotions into the classroom. Mary Wood integrated LSI into Developmental Therapy-Teaching and, in collaboration with Nicholas Long, authored the first textbook, Life Space Intervention in 1992. In the same year, Nicholas Long and Frank Fecser took the next step and developed a certified program in LSCI, creating the professional structure and standards for future training.

This training program also involved making some refinements and modifications to LSI theory to facilitate teaching this model. The name was changed from “Life Space Interviewing” which was too restrictive a term to “Life Space Crisis intervention” which was more inclusive of other therapeutic methods now incorporated with the psycho-educational model.

In 1996, Long and Fecser produced a video series, Life Space Crisis intervention which shows the concepts being used in real-life crisis situations. A second edition of the textbook, Life Space Crisis Intervention; Talking with Students in Conflict, authored in 2001 by Long, Wood, and Fecser, continued LSCI’s evolution.

Today, more than 30,000 professionals working with troubled and troubling children and youth have been trained and certified in LSCI by the Life Space Crisis Intervention Institute. Seminars are conducted throughout the United States and in Canada, Germany, Scotland, Belgium, Norway, New Zealand, Portugal, South Africa, and Australia.