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The Training Courses

ISTDP-UK trainers and Core Trainings are accredited by the International Association of Experiential Dynamic Therapies (IEDTA), the international accrediting body for the group of psychotherapies that have developed based on ISTDP principles.

On successful completion of the three-year Core Training, participants will receive accreditation with IEDTA.

ISTDP-UK training programmes are delivered in consultation with Robert J. Neborsky and are based on the Attachment Based ISTDP approach developed by him. Attachment Based ISTDP relies on research from the child study laboratory of Mary Main regarding attachment security.

Introduction to ISTDP for trainees

Date: 7 June 2024. Bristol.  Cost £250

This one-day course is suitable for trainee psychologists and psychotherapists. Applicants must be enrolled with a recognised training establishment.

The workshop will cover the main principles of assessment, formulation and basic grounding interventions of the model. We will use role-plays and other interactive techniques to demonstrate theoretical concepts.

Please email us if you’d like to apply:

2 Day Introduction To ISTDP

2 Day Introduction to ISTDP

Dates: 11 & 12 October 2024. Venue Bristol   Cost £450

This ‘stand-alone’ two-day course is suitable for those wanting to learn more about the method as well as for those who want to continue onto the three-year full training in ISTDP.

During the two days, participants are given an overview of the theory and metapsychology of ISTDP and learn the core principles of this approach within a small group setting. Lectures, role-play and videotaped ISTDP therapy sessions are used to demonstrate effective interventions to:

  • Develop an effective focus for change
  • Assess and regulate unconscious anxiety
  • Identify maladaptive defence patterns
Register for this course
3 Year Core Training In ISTDP

3 Year Core Training in ISTDP

Venue Online & Bristol.   Cost £2700 per year

Due to the restrictions imposed by COVID, we have changed the structure of the programme to allow for online teaching when necessary. We are hoping that the training group will still be able to meet face to face four times a year in two-day blocks. The rest of the time will be made up of seven half or full day online meetings.

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  • A small training group meets for three years for the equivalent of 12 whole days each year (see notes above)
  • The primary focus of the training group is supervision. All trainees are expected to present video recordings of their psychotherapy work
  • Trainers will introduce core concepts and theory illustrated by recordings of their own work. Role play is used to highlight technical issues and therapists’ difficulties
  • Background reading of theory and published case reports, papers and relevant books will support practical skills. Attendance at workshops and conferences is also encouraged
  • Training group members are encouraged to meet between training blocks for peer supervision
  • The trainers will offer guidance to trainees wishing to undertake a personal ISTDP therapy or additional supervision of their work

The Three-Year Course Covers the Following

  • The evaluation interview, or “trial therapy”
  • Psychodynamic assessment
  • Development of a strong therapeutic alliance
  • Assessment of anxiety pathways and skills for effective anxiety regulation
  • Skills to overcome maladaptive defence patterns and develop more adaptive patterns of relating
  • Facilitating therapeutic experience of emotions
  • Breakthrough to the unconscious
  • Working through

Training Requirements

  • Eligibility for core training require applicants to be registered with a recognised professional body as a psychotherapist, clinical psychologist, psychiatrist or counsellor.
  • Applicants must adhere to a professional code of ethics
  • Applicants must have patients in psychotherapy and be willing to present audio-visual recordings of sessions.
    Applicants must have attended an Introductory Course
  • Training is suitable for those working in the NHS and other organisations, as well as those in private practice.

Core 14 Year 1, 2024 Training Schedule

23 & 24 February (2-day block, face to face)
22 March (Half day online, am)
26 & 27 April (2-day block, face to face)
31 May (Half day online, am)
28 June (Half day online, am)
26 & 27 July (2-day block, face to face)
20 & 21 September (2-day block, face to face)
25 October (Half day online, am)
22 November (Half day online, am)

Register for this course

Advanced Training Course in ISTDP

Dates New group start date to be confirmed.  Venue Online & Bristol  Cost £1650

This one-year course on advanced techniques in ISTDP is suitable for qualified practitioners who have successfully completed any Core Training in Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy.

This course will be a mixture of online and face to face meetings. The small group will meet six times a year for one day.

The course comprises lectures and supervision and will focusses on topics such as: psycho-diagnosis, building of ego-adaptive capacity, working with syntonic character defences, somatic symptom disorders, and the issue of treatment resistance.

Register for this course

“The outcome studies of dynamic psychotherapy indicate to me that the experience of feeling what frightened one in the past in an atmosphere of care, compassion, and safety, is the singularly most crucial healing factor in dynamic psychotherapy.”

Robert J. Neborsky, MD. Brain, Mind and dyadic change processes (2006)