Specific Modality Training in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy


The Specific Modality Training (SMT) programme is a (minimum) four year training in psychoanalytic psychotherapy. The SMT is recognised by the Association for Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy in Ireland (APPI) a constituent member of ICP.

The SMT comprises both the Masters component of training and the post-Masters period. The Masters component is awarded by UCD or Dublin Business School or equivalent in accordance with their academic processes. The School of Psychotherapy is in position to provide a period of training post-Masters because of its role as site for the delivery of the UCD MSc in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy and significant components of the DBS MA in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy. The Programme Directors of the two Masters programmes act as Directors of the SMT programme ensuring a knowledge of each student’s progression that is continuous through the (minimum) four year period of training. Application onto the post Masters period of training is not automatic. Graduates of the Masters programmes make a distinct application for this period of study. Primarily the purpose of the post-Masters component of the SMT  is to provide a suitable and sound structure for trainees to continue their clinical practice, their psychoanalysis and their supervision and have all this work verified by the School of Psychotherapy. Through this structure for training in psychoanalytic psychotherapy the School of Psychotherapy is carrying out its purpose of advancing  “education through the provision of teaching, training and research in psychoanalysis and psychotherapy.”

The SMT structure has been designed to satisfy application for membership criteria for professional bodies that are within the Irish Council For Psychotherapy (ICP) and adhere to the minimum four year training model advocated by ICP. In accordance with these principles the SMT programme is recognised by the Association for Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy in Ireland (APPI) a constituent member of the ICP.

Further information on criteria for application for membership of APPI are available at: https://appi.ie/membership/

The Irish Forum for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy (www.ifpp.ie) may also be contacted for specific details on their  application criteria.

The SMT comprises:

  • a clinical Masters qualification in psychoanalytic psychotherapy (minimum two years duration) such as the UCD MSc in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, the Dublin Business School MA in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, or equivalent.
  • a post Masters period of practice and study to complete a minimum four year period.

For details regarding the structure and content of the two Masters programmes please follow the following links:

UCD MSc in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy:


DBS MA in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy:


The post-Masters component of the SMT comprises the following:

  • a trainee’s continuous engagement in their own personal psychoanalysis / psychoanalytic psychotherapy verified by the School of Psychotherapy
  • a trainee’s continuous engagement in individual psychoanalytic supervision of practice and a supervisor’s report upon completion of the SMT
  • a trainee’s continuous engagement in small group supervision of practice, fortnightly through the academic year (total: 45 hours)
  • a trainee’s submission of a 5,000 word clinical paper read by the two Directors of the SMT and an Extern Examiner
  • a trainee’s successful completion of a final interview

Successful completion of the SMT requires the The School of Psychotherapy  to ratify that each one of these components of the programme has been  carried out in accordance with the application of the principles of psychoanalysis.

For their psychoanalysis / psychoanalytic psychotherapy and psychoanalytic supervision trainees are required to work with practitioners recognised as practising in accordance with psychoanalytic principles articulated in the work of Sigmund Freud and Jacques Lacan. A fundamental requirement for any such practitioner is that he or she has, over an extensive period of time (to be reckoned in decades), engaged in their own psychoanalysis.

“Every analyst should periodically – at intervals of five years or so – submit himself to analysis once more, without feeling ashamed of taking this step.”

Sigmund Freud, Analysis Terminable and Interminable, 1937

Further further information / application form contact Louise Hughes at: