ISTDP Training2019-03-28T21:11:19+00:00

ISTDP Training

To find out more about any of the courses listed please email: [email protected] or use the contact form to get in touch.

Dr Lewis has extensive experience in training clinicians in advanced psychotherapy skills, in particular attachment-based ISTDP. She is an accredited trainer and supervisor with the International Experiential Dynamic Association (IEDTA) and also co-founder and director of ISTDP-UK.  ISTDP London training programmes have been designed in consultation with Dr Robert Neborsky, MD, who has developed the attachment-based ISTDP model.

Training programmes can also be delivered in house and tailored accordingly. I have worked with numerous organisations, including the Centre for Continuing Education at the University of Oxford, University of Cambridge, the British Psychological Society, the University of Hertfordshire (DClin Programme) and various NHS trusts.


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2019, London

This course is designed for practitioners who want to integrate effective ISTDP techniques into their existing therapy practice.

The syllabus will cover:

  • Metapsychology of ISTDP
  • Key therapeutic interventions
  • The diagnostic spectrum and assessment process
  • Working effectively with unconscious anxiety & maladaptive defence processes
  • The punitive superego
  • The Central Dynamic Sequence

In addition to lectures, clinical video presentations are used to teach key concepts and techniques. Supervision of participants’ own clinical work is a key element of the programme and trainees are required to present video tapes of their work in progress.

This programme is suitable for clinicians working in NHS as well as private settings. To be eligible for the foundation skills programme, participants must be qualified mental health professionals registered with a professional body (eg: psychotherapists, psychologists, psychiatrists or counsellors)

After completion of this foundation course, participants have the option to enrol in a further two years training to be eligible for the IEDTA accredited core training certificate.

Course dates 2019-2020

Fri 20 and Sat 21 September 2019

Fri 22 and Sat 23 November 2019

Fri 24 and Sat 25 January 2020

Fri 20 and Sat 21 March 2020

Fri 22 and Sat 23 May 2020

Cost: £2000 (£400 per block)

Fees also include 5 additional hours of individual supervision to be taken up between training blocks.

Venue: London, NW3

Date: 14 November 2019, 10am to 4.30pm

Venue: British Psychological Society, London, EC2A 4UE

Trainer: Dr Sharon Lewis


This course introduces an overview of the theory and metapsychology of ISTDP as well as the core principles of this approach.

Lectures, role-play and videotaped clinical sessions will be used to demonstrate effective attachment-based interventions to:

– develop an effective focus for change

– deepen core emotional experiencing

– Identify pathways of unconscious anxiety

– work with maladaptive defence patterns that prevent successful therapeutic outcomes

The clinical presentation will demonstrate the Central Dynamic Sequence: “Unlocking the Unconscious”

This course has been running in London for the past six years and has been very positively received, with many participants going on to train further in ISTDP or integrating techniques into their existing practices. Previous participants come from a range of mental health and allied fields and include GPs, psychiatrists, counsellors, psychotherapists as well as counselling, clinical and sports psychologists.

Please note:

The course is suitable for registered and qualified mental health professionals.  Applicants without current registration with a professional body are not eligible to attend.  If you are unsure, please email [email protected] to enquire.

Participant feedback

Genuinely inspiring (Psychotherapist, 26 years in practice)

Exceptionally well delivered course led by an exceptional clinician. Inspiring and I have come away with lots of thoughts about how to become a better clinician myself.  (Psychotherapist, 6 years in practice)

Highly informative and engaging – role plays were excellent learning tool. Really inspiring, personally and professionally.
(Counsellor, 1-5 years in practice)

This course consists of a combination of lectures and supervision of trainees’ cases. It is suitable for clinicians who have completed a core training in ISTDP and who are keen to further develop their therapeutic skills to an advanced level.

This course has space for four participants and lectures can be tailored to specific areas of interest.  Topics which are a frequent focus include: working with projection and addressing syntonic character defences and treatment resistance, as well as techniques for treating symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder and somatic symptom disorders.