Education & Training
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Child psychoanalytic training can be pursued through a child focused training program for those who treat only children or adolescents, or concurrently with the adult training program for practitioners who work with the full age spectrum.

Child Psychoanalytic Training Program

Principles of child development are basic to all study in psychoanalysis. Psychoanalysis of children, adolescents, and adults share the aims of alleviating emotional suffering, improving functioning, increasing the capacity for pleasure, and expanding self-knowledge. The goal of child psychoanalysis is to restore the progression of normal development when it has been set off-course.

The CPTP involves working with children and parents with the guidance of a consulting analyst.

SPSI has a long tradition of teaching child psychoanalysis dating back to the 1960s. The Child Psychoanalytic Training Program (CPTP) equips Associates with the skills necessary to treat children and adolescents and to work as needed with their parents. It includes understanding clinical material within the context of a child’s evolving development, modes of communication, and relationships. We teach specific clinical techniques, such as how to help the child move from play to verbalization, how to understand and interpret the child’s transference, conflicts and defenses, and how to understand the child’s use of the analyst as an auxiliary ego or superego. In addition, our training helps the Associate distinguish between conflicts specific to a developmental phase and internalized conflicts that may endure and interfere with progressive development.

Child psychoanalytic training can be pursued through a child focused training program for those who treat only children or adolescents, or concurrently with the adult training program for practitioners who work with the full age spectrum.

The CPTP is comprised of didactic seminars and case conferences, the training analysis, and work with children and parents with the guidance of a consulting child analyst.

Personal Psychoanalysis

The Training Analysis is the foundation for becoming an effective psychoanalyst. Associates develop their capacity for self-observation, self-reflection, and free themselves as much as possible from neurotic conflicts and personality problems which might interfere with treatment of psychoanalytic patients.

Didactic Curriculum

CAs in the CPTP complete the same course of study as described in the Adult Psychoanalytic Training Program with the addition of courses in the process and technique of child analysis.

Learning the Practice of Psychoanalysis

At the end of the first trimester of the first year in the program, Clinical Associates (CAs) may become eligible to conduct psychoanalysis monitored by an approved consulting child analyst.*

*All arrangements for child consultation, including fees, are made between the Consulting Analyst and trainee.

Child Analytic Training Standards

TrainingWe recommend that Clinical Associates become fully apprised of the standards set by the American Psychoanalytic Association for Child and Adolescent psychoanalytic training, and suggest that those interested in the program obtain the booklet Standards for Training on Child and Adolescent Psychoanalysis published by the American Psychoanalytic Association.

All Associates can benefit from exposure to the Child Psychoanalytic Training Program and may participate in various opportunities within the program by special arrangement with the Child Division faculty. We encourage Clinical Associates in the Adult Division to treat a child or adolescent as one of their required three analytic control cases. The Child Analytic faculty provides instruction in the human development seminars of the Adult curriculum and teaches the integration of developmental theory and clinical technique. In addition, the Adult Psychoanalytic Training Program includes child analytic concepts and techniques in most of the process and psychopathology seminars.