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Fundamental Concepts and Techniques of Dynamic Psychotherapy

Patricia Garcia Golding, MSW, Chair

neubauerFundamental Concepts and Techniques of Dynamic Psychotherapy is a one year introductory psychodynamic training for recent graduates and those interested in or returning to clinical practice. This Introductory Psychotherapy Program is designed to assist students continue their professional growth and increase their theoretical knowledge and psychotherapy skills. Trained therapists teach central concepts, and present and discuss relevant clinical material in addition to supervising aspects of clinical work. Students completing the program gain a working knowledge of core psychodynamic language and concepts, and an ability to read and understand psychodynamic literature.


What is the model and theory of dynamic psychotherapy?
The therapeutic vs. the real relationship; an overview of transference; the therapeutic alliance; the unconscious; making the initial phone contact; the early sessions; establishing the framework and boundaries of the psychotherapeutic hour—place, time, money, cancellation policy.
Fundamental concepts of psychodynamic psychotherapy.
Unconscious mental processes, fantasy, unconscious and conscious, compromise formations, drive, defense, therapeutic resistances, psychic determinism, repetition compulsion, normal development, psychopathology.
Definition of transference; how psychotherapy elicits transference; examples of transference during initial phone contact; open sessions and middle phase of treatment; working with transference.
Various psychodynamic understandings of countertransference; illustration of the continuum from conscious to unconscious countertransference; how the therapist becomes aware of countertransference and uses it.
Deepening the treatment.
How psychotherapy unfolds; how the therapist applies the basic concepts in the ongoing work of psychotherapy, e.g. identification of the resistances and defenses in the course of a psychodynamic treatment.
Termination of psychotherapy.
Definitions and history of termination; differences between planned and unplanned termination.; how to apply central concepts to termination; transference and countertransference in termination.


Students are required to have a minimum of 25 hours of supervision with a faculty member each year.


Classes meet Tuesday evenings from 7:00PM to 9:00PM. There are 30 classes in the program.


Applicants must have an advanced degree in a mental health field. The class is designed for new graduates as well as students with advanced degrees who have not provided psychotherapy in the course of their professional careers.


Patricia Garcia Golding, MSW, Chair

Jessica Chan, MSW (guest)
Athena Gavaris, MSW (guest)
Megan Flood, MSW
Rolando Fuentes, MSW
Carol Hindle, MSW
Ruth Neubauer, MSW
Nina Van Sant, MSW
Lenore Shapiro, MSW



Tuition for the academic year is $1,200.
Supervision is $55 per session

CE/CME Award

Full credit based on attendance and any other required work will be 60 credit hours.


Policies and requirements regarding all aspects of participating in Washington School of Psychiatry training programs are available from the "policies" link on the website menu.

Scholarship Application

WSP has very limited scholarship funds. However we will try to help students with a payment plan and scholarship where possible.

About the
Washington School of Psychiatry

Celebrating its 80th year, the School is an accredited provider of post-graduate continuing education.

The Meyer Treatment Center provides low cost access to mental health services. It is an out-of-network facility for insurance purposes.

The Washington School of Psychiatry is an independent non-profit organization. It is not affiliated with the government of the District of Columbia or the government of the United States.

Location and Telephone

5028 Wisconsin Ave NW #400
Washington DC 20016

202-537-6050 Treatment Center

202-237-2700 School

202-237-2730 Fax




Washington School of Psychiatry

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The Washington School of Psychiatry is a registered 501(c)3 charity.​