An Invitation from the Psychoanalytic Training Program

Our training program, designed to engage our candidates in an educational process that brings alive the excitement, creativity, and diversity of a contemporary relational, self psychological psychoanalytic approach, is fostered by the study of psychoanalytic thought and therapeutic action through the examination of various theoretical models and their historical context.  Through intensive study of each candidate’s clinical work in individual and peer supervision and class discussion along with personal analytic work, we facilitate a process of self-discovery as candidates become immersed in their clinical analytic work and, over time, forge their analytic identities. We strive to create an educational milieu that encourages open dialogue, critical thinking, playing with ideas and scholarship through writing. Our candidates and graduates consistently report an enhanced capacity to engage more fully and stay closer to the experience of their patients in their in-depth analytic work. In addition many graduates have become leaders in the psychoanalytic community at large.  Please contact Elizabeth Carr, Chair of Admissions, at 202-822-8371 or . We would like to know of your interest.


Educational Philosophy

In our psychoanalytic training program, we communicate to our candidates a sense of excitement, creativity, and diversity that exists within contemporary psychoanalysis. Through intense study and open dialogue, we facilitate a process of discovery as candidates forge their analytic identities. We create an educational milieu that encourages critical thinking and writing.

Course of Study

Our curriculum provides in-depth study of broad theoretical ideas from classical to contemporary. The primary focus is on the study of contemporary self psychological and relational psychoanalytic models, along with findings from developmental research, attachment research, and neuroscience. Our program is particularly strong in re-examining seminal psychoanalytic concepts such as the unconscious and therapeutic action in light of contemporary clinical and developmental findings.

The curriculum encompasses three years of coursework. In each training year, we offer two class sessions per week for 30 weeks of classes. The curriculum is usually divided into six-week courses that include both a theoretical and a clinical concentration. In the first year, an introduction to psychoanalytic practice includes a focus on assisting candidates to deepen their clinical work in order to help them develop control cases. We offer a review of contemporary psychoanalytic theories including self psychology, intersubjectivity, motivational systems theory, and relational theory. In the second year, we expand the range of psychoanalytic theories and continue our focus on psychoanalytic practice. In the courses featuring the major psychoanalytic theories, each section will include the relevant model’s views concerning: transference, countertransference, developmental process, psychopathology, working with dreams, primary clinical approach, and therapeutic action. We also emphasize writing in our curriculum as a means of promoting scholarship and critical thinking.

In the third year, candidates and faculty collaborate to design the learning program in order to meet the unique learning needs of the class. The curriculum may follow up on a particular interest of the class members or be a more intense study of a previously offered topic. Examples of courses offered in the past third year curriculum include a psychoanalytic approach to trauma, gender, sexuality, motivational systems, addictions, intersubjectivity and comparisons between self psychology and American relational approaches. Recent seminars by leading psychoanalytic scholars, many of whom are on our faculty, include Owen Renik, Jim Fosshage, Donnel Stern, Judith Teicholz, Estelle Shane, Alan Kindler, Helen Gediman, Shelley Doctors, Joseph Lichtenberg, and Andrew Morrison.


Each candidate has an advisor who offers guidance and support through the training process. The advisor meets at least yearly with the candidate to discuss the training experience and to identify learning needs.

Personal Analysis

Through a personal analysis, candidates develop expanded awareness and understanding of their unique subjective reactions in the clinical encounter. Candidates discover blocks and blind spots which prevent them from being fully available to an analysand. This process of self-discovery promotes a capacity for a fuller psychoanalytic engagement.

We recommend, although we do not require it, that the analyst be from within the ICP+P Psychoanalytic faculty. We find that the experience of combining analysis, supervision, and course work from within the contemporary relational mode creates a powerful learning experience for candidates. For candidates who have already completed an analysis, the decision about whether the candidate’s analysis will satisfy the requirement for the personal analysis will be considered during the admission process.

Peer Group

Awareness of self is vital to being an analyst. The peer group experience provides another opportunity to facilitate openness and vulnerability in revealing personal reactions that come up in analytic work. A unique aspect of our psychoanalytic training programs includes weekly meetings as a peer group (without faculty presence) with a focus on case presentations. Ideally, the peer group helps to enhance trust and cohesion as candidates grow in their in capacities to talk about psychoanalytic ideas, apply them clinically, and to help each other.

Supervised Clinical Work

Learning to listen, empathize, and deepen an analysis is challenging and rewarding. Each candidate is required to treat at least three patients at a minimum frequency of three sessions/week over a substantial period of time. Supervision is required for each case. Candidates write up yearly case reports and discuss their analytic development with advisors and supervisors. ICP+P is committed to assisting candidates in finding control cases through suitable referrals and is developing an active referral service.


First Year Courses

  • Historical Context on Psychoanalysis
  • Introduction to Psychoanalytic Practice
  • Kohut and the Foundation of Self Psychology
  • Freud’s Technique Papers – A Contemporary Analysis
  • Developments in Post Kohutian Self Psychology
  • Foundational & Contemporary Perspectives on Transference and Countertransference
  • Writing – Case Report
  • Motivational Systems Theory – Understanding Developmental Processes
  • Motivational Systems Theory – Guidelines for Analytic Engagement
  • Intersubjective Systems Theory – Stolorow, Atwood, Brandchaft, and Orange
  • Engaging Difference – Socio Cultural, Political Perspective

Second Year Courses

  • Attachment
  • Melanie Klein & Bion: Foundational to Contemporary
  • Object Relations: Winnicott, Fairbairn, Guntrip, Baliant
  • Infant Research & Psychoanalytic Engagement: Beebe, Lachmann, Seligman
  • Developmental Perspective on Intersubjectivity – Stern, Benjamin
  • Relational Perspectives: Mitchell, Aron, Hoffman, Davis
  • Interpersonal
  • Ethical Turn – Levinas, Orange, Corpt
  • Analyst’s Use of Self
  • Working with Dreams
  • Writing – Case Report

Third Year Courses – some examples*

  • Trauma
  • Termination
  • Development of an Evolving Analytic Identity
  • What’s Next: Reflections on Analytic Practice
  • Case conference with a Selected Faculty
  • Challenging Ideas/Important Questions in Contemporary Psychoanalysis
  • Topics in Contemporary Thinking – Analysis of Selected Papers in the Literature
  • Synthesis: Putting it Together
  • Writing – Case Report
  • Freud’s Case – Reflection and Analysis

* The third year curriculum is developed with the faculty to meet the learning needs of a particular class.

The 2020-2021 academic year is the third year of the current class.  The detailed course schedule is accessible by clicking here. The password protected Syllabus and Readings page for current students can also be accessed there.

Continuing Education

The program meets for 30 weeks across the academic calendar and offers 3.0 CE credits for most evenings. A CE/CME certificate is awarded for each unit of the program individually. To receive the credits, attendees must attend 100% of the classes within each unit. Partial credit is not possible.

Admissions Policy

Admission to the Psychoanalytic Training Program is open to any individual who has completed a degreed program and who has sufficient clinical experience to learn psychoanalytic technique. We look for individuals who have a foundation in psychoanalytic theory, and the personal maturity and life circumstances that permit the undertaking of an intensive training program. Upon acceptance to the Psychoanalytic Training Program each individual is expected to begin a personal analysis, if one is not yet in process or completed. Scholarship assistance is available.

ICP+P does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, national or ethnic

All applicants should submit a completed application package (click here to go to the online application), including a $50 application fee. For those applicants who are considered eligible, interviews with faculty members are scheduled. Each application is subsequently reviewed by the Admissions Committee. The applicant is informed in writing of the decision and is invited to discuss decisions of deferral or rejection.


$50.00 fee (applicable toward tuition).

$2,150.00 per two-semester academic year.  The application fee will be applied to the tuition. Tuition will be billed for the fall and spring semesters in August and December, respectively. Tuition refunds will be available until the semester begins.

Students may apply for scholarship assistance by clicking here.


Fees for supervision are in addition to the program tuition and are arranged with the individual supervisor. We encourage all supervisors to reduce their fees when appropriate to accommodate a candidate’s financial needs. The Chair of the Psychoanalytic Training Program and the individual candidate’s advisor will assist in process of selecting supervisors.

Psychoanalytic Training Program Faculty

Chair: Sandra Hershberg, MD
Admissions & Outreach Chair: Elizabeth M. Carr, APRN, MSN, BC
Curriculum Chair: Sandra Hershberg, MD
Progress Committee Chair: Marie Hellinger, MSW


Lawrence Ballon, MD
Robert Benedetti, PhD
R. Curtis Bristol, MD
Heidi Block, MSW
Elizabeth M. Carr, APRN, MSN, BC
Russell Carr, MD
Mauricio Cortina, MD
Yvonne Decuir, PhD
Shelley Doctors, PhD*
James L. Fosshage, PhD*
Marie Hellinger, MSW
Fonya Helm, PhD
Sandra G. Hershberg, MD
Jane Jones, MSW
Linda Kanefield, PhD
Frank Lachmann, PhD*
Susan G. Lazar, MD
Faith Lewis, MSW
Joseph Lichtenberg, MD
Monica Leonie Meerbaum, PhD
Sarah Pillsbury, PhD
Roger Segalla, PhD
Estelle Shane, PhD*
Malcolm Slavin, PhD*
Leslie F. Smith, MSW

* indicates out-of-town faculty

Graduates of the Psychoanalytic Training Program

Elizabeth Carr, APRN, MSN, BC (2003)
Marie Hellinger, MSW (2004)
Lawrence Ballon, MD (2005)
Leslie Smith, MSW (2005)
Susan Gorman, MSW (2006)
Jane Jones, PhD, MSW (2006)
Faith Lewis, MSW (2006)
Pat Petrash, MSW (2006)
Roger Segalla, PhD (2007)
Heidi Block, MSW (2009)
Monica Callahan, PhD (2010)
Janet Dante, MSW (2010)
Mary Jean Kane, MSW (2010)
Linda Kanefield, PhD (2012)
Sarah Pillsbury, PhD (2012)
Kathy Beck, MSW (2013)
Russell Carr, MD (2013)
John McComb, MSW, PhD (2013)
Shoshana Ringel, PhD (2013)
Charlotte Coates Wilkes (2014)
Thomas Gray, PhD, MSW (2014)
Rhoda Spindel, MSW (2014)
Gwendolyn Pla, PhD, MSW (2017)
Eileen Boyle, PhD (2019)
Ruth Migler, MA, MSW (2019)
John Paddock, PhD (2019)
Edward (Ted) Billings, MSW (2020)

Current Members-in-Training

Advanced Trainees

Dane Frost, MA, LCPC


Alyson Kepple, MD
Adriana Couto Silva, LCPC
Elaina Vasserman-Stokes, PhD, LPC
Daniela Wolf, LCPC, LCPAT, ATR-BC

The Institute of Contemporary Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis (ICP+P) is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. ICP+P maintains responsibility for this program and its content. ICP+P is approved by the Maryland Board of Social Work Examiners to offer Category I continuing education credit. As our CE program receives oversight from a licensed social worker, the CE credits we award are highly likely to be recognized by licensing boards in Virginia and the District of Columbia. These continuing education credits meet the ANCC standards for nurses. Marriage and family therapists licensed in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia may submit these CE credits to their licensing boards. (Marriage and family therapists in other jurisdictions and licensed counselors should inquire with their local Boards regarding continuing education credit.) Attendees from the above professional groups will earn CE credits for attending the classes. Full attendance is required to receive the designated CE credit. ICP+P is accredited by MedChi, the Maryland State Medical Society to provide continuing medical education for physicians. ICP+P designates this educational activity for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

* The presenters and the planners have informed us that they do not have a conflict of interest and have disclosed that they have no relevant financial relationships with any commercial interests pertaining to this educational activity. Additionally, the presenters have been instructed to disclose any limitations of data and unlabeled or investigational uses of products during the presentations. The presentations will not contain any references to off-label (non-FDA-approved) use of products or devices.