BPSI’s ATP training program consists of four major parts, which take place concurrently:



ATP students are offered a wide range of small, clinically informed, interactive seminars that include tracing the evolution of psychoanalytic theory, a study of childhood development, an examination of the stages of treatment, as well as an exploration of specific clinical issues. As students in didactic seminars, they concurrently take a series of courses in clinical practice that emphasizes the relation between theory and technique in their ongoing cases.

The ATP curriculum encompasses diverse perspectives on psychoanalytic theory, from classical concepts, through ego and self-psychology, to object-relations theory and current thinking about relational and inter-subjective ways of understanding patients and methods for conducting treatment. Students interact closely with faculty members and may participate in ongoing reviews of the curriculum. Along with BPSI Members and psychoanalytic Candidates, they are encouraged to attend the programs, lecture series and writing workshops offered at BPSI.

Each ten-week trimester consists of two seminars – one didactic and one in clinical practice – which explore the relation between Theory and Technique in clinical work. Traditionally, seminars meet Thursday evenings from 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm and 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm. There is a one-hour break between classes when students are able to have dinner and enjoy informal conversations together. The academic year is divided into trimesters of ten-weeks each for a total of 30 weeks of classes, from mid-September through May. Although BPSI has conducted some virtual classes this year, our focus is on in-person learning when safety allows and applicants are expected to be able to attend classes at BPSI, at 141 Herrick Road in Newton Centre.

BPSI provides Continuing Education credits for Social Workers, Psychologists, and Psychiatrists for select ATP Seminars.


Throughout our training programs BPSI provides several mentors, volunteers from faculty who are committed to supporting ATP students throughout their education and into their professional advancement.


ATP faculty members are experienced clinicians who seek to bring the richness, excitement, and depth of contemporary psychoanalytic thinking into the classroom and to help students bring psychoanalytic understanding into their clinical work.

Click here for a list of our faculty.

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ATP students are required to conduct a twice-weekly supervised psychotherapy with two suitable patients. Each treatment is to continue for a minimum of two years. Students generally meet with supervisors weekly, especially in the early stages of treatment. The relationship between student and Supervisor offers a significant mentoring experience.

Supervision Guidelines

  • All ATP Supervisors agree to a fixed reduced fee.
  • Students with financial need may apply for scholarship support to help pay for supervision fees.
  • All BPSI graduate psychoanalysts and all graduates of the ATP are eligible to supervise ATP students. For a list of supervisors who are already a part of that system, please click here.
  • For graduation, students must have accumulated at least 150 hours of supervision for their ATP cases occurring concurrently with their treatment.

Click here to read about our supervisory fee system.

Referral Service

BPSI’s Referral Service, offered by our Referral Committee, can be an excellent source for referrals. ATP Students are encouraged to add their practice information to the BPSI referral database. The Referral committee uses the database to make referrals from the community of people who are considering psychoanalysis and/or psychoanalytic psychotherapy.

While the Referral Service can be source for referrals, the ATP Program and Referral Committee cannot guarantee that they will provide the training cases that are necessary in order to fulfill the requirements necessary for graduation.

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BPSI considers students’ personal therapy to be a crucial part of thorough training. Through a personal psychotherapy or a psychoanalysis, students develop a deeper understanding of themselves and the intensive psychotherapy process while gaining a greater openness to their own feelings and those of others.

The exploration, understanding and insight afforded by the therapy allows each student the experience of free association, transference, resistance and termination. By participating in their own therapy, students develop a fuller appreciation of the nature of their patients’ experience with the therapeutic relationship and process and come to feel more responsive and freer in their personal and professional lives.

In the context of a close, working relationship with their therapist, students are able to identify and address conflicts and therefore enhance their capacity to be good psychotherapists. Ultimately, each student’s personal therapy contributes to the development of his or her self-analytic skill and identity as a psychoanalytic psychotherapist.

The personal psychotherapy is fully confidential and fees are arranged privately between student and therapist.

ATP students are required to undergo a personal psychotherapy experience of a depth and
 intensity at least comparable to the clinical work they will be doing, that is, twice a week
psychoanalytic psychotherapy for a minimum of two years with a licensed mental health clinician. Some students engage in more intensive personal psychotherapy or psychoanalysis. Ideally the student’s therapy would occur concurrently with the student’s participation in the ATP and intensive treatment of a patient. However, personal treatment may have been completed in advance of matriculation.

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After the completion of seminars, ATP students write a paper demonstrating an understanding of some aspect of psychoanalytic psychotherapy. This is generally a write-up of a training case (of approximately twelve to fifteen pages). There are a number of supports available to students to facilitate the writing of this paper.

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Continue to:
Program Overview
Training Program Elements
Faculty & Students
ATP Supervisors