ICAPP Child and Adolescent Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Training Program


ICAPP is recognised Australia wide and internationally as providing a comprehensive Training Program for professionals wanting to work therapeutically with children, adolescents and their families. We also run stand-alone courses on subjects of interest to those already working therapeutically with young people.

ICAPP was established in 1984 by Peter Blake and Averil Earnshaw after they had completed the postgraduate child psychotherapy training in London at the renowned Tavistock Clinic. Peter is a senior clinical psychologist and the author of the acclaimed book Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy, now in its third edition and used in universities and child and adolescent training in several countries. Averil Earnshaw was an eminent child psychiatrist and the author of Family Time and other books which focus on working with families.

ICAPP is now a not-for-profit organisation committed to providing a high standard of training for those wanting to work psychodynamically with children, adolescents and their families.

All ICAPP training is offered via Zoom to Australian and international students.

About ICAPP Training Program

ICAPP offers both a 3-year training program as well as individual subjects in psychoanalytic psychotherapy with children and adolescents.

Our psychoanalytic psychotherapy training programs are suitable for qualified professionals who wish to work therapeutically with children, adolescents, and their family/caregivers. Applicants are required to have completed a 3-year degree from an approved tertiary institution.

The full training program consists of 12 units of study over the three-year period. The four units in each year must be completed before advancing to the following year. Completion of the training allows for application of full membership to ICAPP.

The next intake for the ICAPP Training Program and individual courses is now open for the year commencing February 2024.

Download Training Schedule 2024

Learning Components of the ICAPP 3 Year Program

1 Infant Observation

Infant Observation is the cornerstone in analytic training, and it is fundamental to ICAPP training in Year 1. Each student is required to observe a baby (with the mother or caregiver) on a one hour a week basis for the first year of an infants’ life.  Written accounts of the experience of each observation are recorded and are then discussed in a weekly small group seminar with a seminar leader who provides a psychoanalytic lens for the discussion. 

This experience is invaluable in developing a student’s powers of observation, along with an understanding of the emotional states of the infant as well as the mother-infant relationship. On completion of the twelve months observation, students write a paper on their understandings gained from the observation and the weekly seminars.

2 Seminar Program

In ICAPP’s training program, seminars are conducted weekly over the 3 years of study and are structured into a four-term year.

Seminars cover the following three broad categories:

  a) Theoretical Seminars

These seminars provide a thorough historical and theoretical introduction to the practice of child and adolescent psychoanalytic psychotherapy. They include an understanding of the central concepts of psychoanalytic theory and their application to practice. 

  b) Clinical Seminars

Along with theoretical seminars, clinical seminars are presented where session material is discussed to enable a deep understanding of clinical practice as it applies to theory.

3 Clinical Cases

In year three students are offered the opportunity to work with children under the supervision of qualified and experienced psychoanalytic child psychotherapists. They then write a paper focussing on the work with the child or adolescent patient seen during the training program.  The paper will demonstrate the student’s capability as a psychoanalytic psychotherapist.

4 Ongoing Assessment

Throughout the training, regular monitoring of the candidate’s progress is undertaken.

Applying for ICAPP Training

Applicants are required to have graduate qualifications such as psychology, social work, medical qualifications, or be professionals from another field.

Applications are welcome from within Australian as well as from those living outside of Australia.

For enquiries or to apply please contact the ICAPP Training Committee at info@icapp.com.au


Upon completion of Level 1 students will receive a Certificate in Foundation Studies in the Understanding of Children and Adolescents.

Upon completion of Level 2 students will receive a Diploma in Clinical Studies of Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy and will be eligible to apply for Associate Membership of ICAPP.

After successful completion of Level 3, along with the completion of two training cases plus a presentation of one of these cases to the Training Committee, students will receive an Accreditation as a Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist with ICAPP and will be eligible to apply for Full Membership of ICAPP. 

All seminars are conducted via Zoom
Interstate and professionals from other countries are encouraged to apply.


The courses are available to graduates and experienced professionals from a variety of health and education disciplines who are interested in the application of psychodynamic thinking to a range of fields of human endeavour and intervention. Applicants require a 3-year degree in an approved tertiary institution. People interested in training are required to make an application and have an interview via Zoom to determine the suitability of the application.