About Modern Psychoanalytic Institute Training in Psychoanalysis

Institutes accepted for membership in the Society of Modern Psychoanalysts must meet the following criteria:

Admission: A Modern Psychoanalytic institute conducts interviews to evaluate the applicant’s potential and motivation to develop as a therapeutic personality.

The Training Analysis: All students at a Modern Psychoanalytic institute undergo a personal training analysis throughout their training at the institute. Most institutes require a minimum of 450 hours of analysis, 150 hours of which may be conducted in a group setting.

Course work: The course work at an institute familiarizes the student with the work of Freud and others in the field of psychoanalysis. Courses are designed to explain psychoanalysis from a developmental, theoretical, historical, clinical and research perspective. Special emphasis is placed on the work of Hyman Spotnitz and his colleagues, with an indication of how it relates to other developments in the field. Students generally take between thirty and forty-two courses in theory, history, maturational development, clinical application and research. Individual, family, child and group analysis may be incorporated into these courses. Students proceed though the program at their own pace. Clinical experience generally begins with the Fieldwork Placement Program where students work with borderline and psychotic patients in an institutional setting under faculty and administrative supervision.  A minimum of two years in the internship is recommended to assure sufficient understanding of psychosis and other related conditions.

Supervised Clinical Work: The student’s training in clinical work resembles independent private practice.  Course work and supervision while the student is in this phase of training help the student develop his/her understanding of how theory relates to observable phenomena including how to use the theory of technique to formulate interventions which will lead to therapeutic progress. Generally, supervision is at the ratio of one hour of supervision for each four hours of patient contact. It may be conducted in small groups at the beginning of clinical training. In the later phase of training, the student will study one control case in depth with a senior supervisor and work with a second supervisor on one or more other cases.  A minimum of 50 hours in each is the standard for the field.

Research Project: A written research project is undertaken by the student to explore events/phenomena observed in case work under controlled conditions.  A control case is usually selected in which a research question can be explored to arrive at plausible explanations of the variables observed.

Graduation: A Candidate is required to meet all the course and training requirements and to make an oral presentation of his/her research and clinical work that demonstrates his/her ability to understand transference, and resis-tance and to conduct analyses without interference from personal problems.

Requirements for Graduation

Certificate in Psychoanalysis  (P)

1) An approved training analysis with a certified modern analyst consisting of at least 450 sessions, of which 150 may be group analysis also conducted by a certified modern analyst.
2) Satisfactory completion of the Field Placement Program.
3) Satisfactory completion of required course work.
4) Treatment of a minimum of three Referral Service cases, under supervision, demonstrating an understanding of resistance, transference and countertransference.
5) Satisfactory completion of supervision requirements. A minimum of 150 sessions of supervision with a certified modern analyst, of which at least 50 sessions must be control analysis.
6) Satisfactory completion of a research paper, written in the final stage of training, which demonstrates both an ability to apply fundamental research principles in a case study, and an understanding of motivational forces and their role in psychic structure. 
7) A case presentation demonstrating the ability to recognize and resolve resistances and an understanding of the relationship among the psychic processes.
8) A Master’s or other graduate degree in a related field.

Certificate in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy  (PP)

Candidates who are interested in the recognition of their competency in psychoanalytic practice, or in its use as a subspecialty of another mental health discipline, may apply for a certificate in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy.  Research requirements are less stringent. The PP certificate does not qualify the candidate for research or training in psychoanalysis.

Certificate in Group Psychotherapy  (GP)

1) An approved group analysis consisting of at least 100 group sessions with a certified modern analyst.
2) An approved analysis consisting of at least 100 sessions of individual analysis with a certified modern analyst, conjoint or concurrent with group analysis.
3) Satisfactory completion of a minimum of 100 sessions in a supervisory training group conducted by a certified modern analyst.
4) Satisfactory completion of 300 sessions of group leadership.
5) A Master’s or other graduate degree in a related field.

 © 2009 SMP - Society of Modern Psychoanalysts

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