Online Foundations

March 2 - May 24, 2020

Meet once a week for 12 Weeks in an online classroom

Complete coursework outside the classroom at your own pace

Instructors: Mary Jane Dieter, Robyn Stratton-Berkessel

Register Here

Online Foundations

What would your organization look like if it thrived? What are its strengths?

Appreciative Inquiry can teach you how to identify and organize around the positive core of your business, organization or community. By lifting up capacities and successes that already exist, Appreciative Inquiry reinforces relationships and culture, creates common vision and direction, promotes learning and innovation, and energizes collective action. Called "the best large-group method in the world today," AI helps organizations design an aligned vision and mission based on existing strengths and values.

Foundations in Appreciative Inquiry Online Program

Through a portal that includes readings, videos, online discussions, and personal application opportunities, you will dive into the "why's" and "how's" of Appreciative Inquiry as a proven approach to accelerating strength-based organizational change.

You will explore the power of questions to seed positive change in any situation, and discover how to engage others in the change process for lasting results. You will have the opportunity to create positive change that bridges high ideals with a results-oriented mindset through work on an application project specific to you.

  • Apply theories and methodologies related to AI to generate value within organizational systems.
  • Design and implement an Appreciative Inquiry-based organizational intervention.
  • Create and apply effective appreciative questions that facilitate positive change within organizational contexts at the interpersonal, team, and system level.

Topics Covered:

  • The History of AI
  • The emerging positive revolution in the social sciences
  • The power of questions in creating organization change
  • The 5 Classic Core Principles of AI
    • Constructionist Principle
    • Simultaneity Principle
    • Poetic Principle
    • Anticipatory Principle
    • Positive Principle
  • The AI 4-D framework
  • AI as a framework for action research & organization change
  • Application of AI at all organizational levels:
    • Interpersonal
    • Coaching
    • Team building
    • Strategic planning
    • Community Development
  • AI case studies  

The First Step Toward Certification

The Foundation Course is the first step in earning a Certification in Appreciative Inquiry. Foundations graduates can choose to continue with fieldwork and a 3-day Capstone Course, after which they will be certified in Appreciative Inquiry by the David L. Cooperrider Center for Appreciative Inquiry.


Robyn Stratton-BerkesselRobyn Stratton-Berkessel

Robyn Stratton-Berkessel is known as the Positivity Strategist. Her career began with teaching English as second language (ESL) to adult immigrants in Australia. After completing a Master's Degree in Organizational Systems, she moved into management consulting with KPMG, working as client-facing training and development consultant. She led her own practice in Melbourne, Australia for 7 years before moving to the USA in 2000 where she was introduced to Appreciative Inquiry (AI) by David Cooperrider and Ron Fry. It's been her path ever since. Her book, Appreciative Inquiry for Collaborative Solutions: 21 Strength-Based Workshops (2010) was a first with its downloadable ready-made AI-framed workshops on topics of strategic relevance. She's also creator and host of a podcast show, a TEDx talk, online courses. She's driven to experiment and find channels to attract global audiences and make AI more accessible. Clients in business sector: technology (Google), finance, (Deutsche Bank and lots of banks in Australia), pharmaceuticals (Pfizer, Abbot, J&J), manufacturing (BAE Systems), and professional services (Accenture, KPMG. In community development, she's worked with diverse communities in Jersey City, NJ, and Boca Raton, FL, and non-profits to bring voice and collective vision about what matters. In education, she teaches Advanced Applications of AI online in the Positive Organization Development Graduate Program with David L. Cooperrider Center for AI. She is married to Juergen, a truly gifted artist and technologist, who has been her muse to bring AI into the digital world. They live in Bradenton, FL with Neo - their adorable fluffy black cat. For more information:   

Mary Jane DieterMary Jane Dieter

Mary Jane, the founder of Appreciative Pathways, is a facilitator who guides organizations and communities to discover, analyze, and leverage their collective strengths to co-create their desired future. For the past nine  years, Mary Jane has used Appreciative Inquiry as the foundation for her facilitation approach because of her belief that the best way to create positive change is to ask questions of the whole system about what works and why. In addition to the face-to-face Facilitating Appreciative Inquiry Training (FAIT) she and Liz Corcoran offer in collaboration with The Cooperrider Center for Appreciative Inquiry, Mary Jane also teaches others who are inspired to learn more about Appreciative Inquiry through The Center's 4-week online "Developing an Appreciative Mindset" course and the 12-week online "Foundations of Appreciative Inquiry" course. Mary Jane holds a Certificate in Appreciative Inquiry from the Center and is also a Member of their Council of Practice. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University and her Masters of Social Work from the University of Southern California.