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Psychodynamic or Psychoanalytic Parent-infant Psychotherapy

Hybrid Learning

This new specialist training will prepare you to work as a Psychodynamic or Psychoanalytic Parent-Infant Psychotherapist (PPIP). During this  2-year course, you will draw upon psychoanalytic theory, developmental psychology, and other contemporary ideas about infant mental health and parent-infant relationships to offer PPIP to parents and infants under supervision. This work can take place from pregnancy through to the child’s second year. This course is delivered in a hybrid format with a mix of online and in-person study.

Graduates of the training may join the professional association of psychoanalytic parent infant psychotherapists – the PPIP Society at the bpf. This training is currently undergoing the accreditation process with the BPC (British Psychoanalytic Council).

The next intake for this course will be January 2026. Applications will open in January 2025.

The principles and practice of PPIP will be taught through a mixture of theoretical seminars, clinical presentations and supervision of clinical cases. Once a month for 18 months, there will be an in-person teaching day with a speaker and topic, clinical case discussion, reading group, context group and group supervision.  There may be occasional additional focus days added for master classes from Senior members of the profession. Group supervision will continue weekly online for 2 years. The specialist PPIP approach encourages the therapist to focus on the relationship between parent/s and baby as the “patient”, and aims to ensure therapists learn to privilege the baby as the subject of the intervention.

The teaching team are all consultants or senior Psychoanalytic or Psychodynamic Parent Infant Psychotherapists. The theoretical and practical basis of the teaching follows the model developed by members of the former PIP service and training team at the Anna Freud Centre and published in: https://www.karnacbooks.com/product/the-practice-of-psychoanalytic-parent-infant-psychotherapy-claiming-the-baby-second-edition/38200/?MATCH=1

The Practice of Psychoanalytic Parent-Infant Psychotherapy: Claiming the Baby: Second Edition by Tessa Baradon

The Practice of Psychoanalytic Parent-Infant Psychotherapy: Claiming the Baby: Second Edition by Tessa Baradon at Karnac Books


The training consists of:

  • Interactive taught seminars
  • Reading seminars (monthly)  
  • Treatment of 4 cases 
  • Group supervision of training cases (weekly, online) 
  • Context group (monthly) 
  • Written work 
  • Termly review meetings 
  • Personal therapy 

Additional requirements: 

Introduction to psychoanalytic concepts : 

Trainees who lack formal training in psychoanalytic theory will be required to complete the bpf Foundations course, an introduction to psychoanalytic concepts and their application to practice  (additional charge)  

Infant Observation: 

Trainees who have not completed a psychoanalytic infant observation course will be required to undertake one. This may be done before commencing the PPIP training or concurrently at the bpf (additional charge) . See information here


There will be a series of introductory and ongoing seminars on topics relevant to the PPIP trainees, encompassing the theory and practice of PPIP, and specialist topics such as working with the baby, assessing risk in the relationship, perinatal states of mind etc.

Reading seminars

The reading seminars provide an opportunity to embed psychoanalytic and developmental literature relevant to the practice of parent-infant psychotherapy. Trainees are required to read a number of papers for each seminar and be able to discuss common themes and points of difference. Trainees are entitled to use the bpf’s library.  

Supervision (group supervision, weekly)  

Supervision is a core element of the training. Each trainee presents clinical case material of parent-infant psychotherapy to the supervision group, usually by showing filmed session material and/or using process session notes.  Trainees are encouraged to reflect on their conceptualisations, interventions, and countertransference to the material in the session, and also to each other’s presentations. Cases are presented with an emphasis on the micro-moments – helped by analysing video material. Safeguarding and networking issues are also thought about carefully in the group. A focus on the baby’s experience and the clinician’s contact with the baby is at the heart of the work. This emphasis also marks the transition in focus for the practitioner who is learning how to be a parent-infant psychotherapist. 

Clinical training cases 

Two routes are offered for seeing cases. The first is to see training cases at the trainee’s place of employment, with the support and case management of the employer, while attending the required courses and supervision. The second is to organize an honorary placement with an NHS Perinatal PIMHS PIP or similar team independently or with our support. (The course has some arrangements in place in London for placements and can support the trainee). 

Trainees are required to see 4 training cases on a weekly basis, they will need to meet a number of different criteria which is set out in the Training Handbook. 

Clinical presentations

The clinical presentations are the forum in which we invite senior PIP professionals/ tutors on the course to present a case for in-depth discussion, and are an opportunity for the trainees to be exposed to the approaches and clinical work of senior members in the profession. The discussions aim to maintain a live process of elaboration of technique and theory in relation to the model. Trainees are encouraged to participate in the discussions.  

Context Group

Becoming a PPIP therapist entails both personal and organizational adjustments. The context group is a discussion forum for the whole trainee cohort to assist in the transition to the role of parent-infant psychotherapist. It is a forum which focuses on contextual issues such as team, organization, and referral pathways, as well as reflecting on personal developments.    

Written work 

Session notes 

Trainees are required to keep updated session notes on each of their cases for supervision purposes. The first session must be written up in detail and handed into the supervisor. Subsequent notes need to be detailed enough to give the reader an idea of what transpired in the session in terms of both process and content. Notes will also include all contacts with the network, supervisions received and risk assessments. 

Reflective Learning Log (RLL) 

A central aim of the course is to enhance the trainee’s self-reflective reflective capacities in this field of work. To this end, trainees will be required to maintain an ongoing log of their experience in relation to conceptual learning, clinical work and self-development. Writing in the log is seen to be a process of free-associative recording of the process of learning and self-reflection in the course of the training.  

At the end of the training, a summary of the RLL is submitted with the final paper. The summary is intended to give the Training Committee an overview of the trainee’s perception and processing of their learning experience while ensuring that the trainees’ privacy is respected.  

Final paper 

Submission of a final paper is a requirement for completion of the training. 

The final paper is expected to demonstrate the trainee’s level of practice and conceptualization at the point of completing the seminars and clinical work. The word paper (up to 5000 words, including references) will comprise of a case study and the theoretical framework that helped the trainee conceptualise and work therapeutically with the family and baby.  The paper does not have to demonstrate ‘success’ of therapy. It can equally address a case that raised issues for the trainee or which was assessed at the end as not having brought much change.

The final paper will be read by the course organiser or a senior member of the PIP team and an external reader. It will be marked as pass or fail, and feedback will be given to the trainee. 

Review meetings (once per term)  

The purpose of the meetings is to discuss progress and any difficulties that have arisen and focus on areas that require further development. The meetings are held with the Head of Training or Chair of the Supervision Committee.  

The trainees are required to complete their case log and self-assessment forms (Appendixes 3 and 4) ahead of the review, for discussion in the meeting. 

Personal therapy 

Depending on their history of psychoanalytic psychotherapy and current circumstances, trainees are required to be in personal therapy for the duration of the course. The length of time & frequency will depend on past therapy experience and this will be discussed individually in the intake process. Only analysts registered with the psychoanalytic psychotherapy section of the BPC are accepted as training analysts for the purposes of this course.  Fee and payment arrangements are made between the trainee and their analyst. 

  • Registration with professional body: Applicants must have current professional full clinical registration (doctoral equivalence) with a recognised professional body such as HCPC, UKCP, BPC, ACP, or BPS. 
  • Personal psychoanalytic psychotherapy: Applicants must have had a minimum of two years of personal psychoanalytic psychotherapy with a psychoanalyst/psychoanalytic psychotherapist registered with the British Psychoanalytic Council (BPC)  psychoanalytic section  
  • Accreditation: for future possible registration with the BPC there are 2 routes: for the psychodynamic PIP registration: once weekly personal psychotherapy is sufficient, for those wishing to become registered as psychoanalytic parent infant psychotherapists, 3 – 4 x weekly therapy is required. 
  • Work experience: Applicants must have at least four years of experience of working therapeutically as a clinician. Experience of working with children and infants is desirable but not essential. 
  • Infant observation: Applicants are required to have completed an observation course in psychoanalytic parent-infant observation for a minimum of one year. Applicants may undertake this observation alongside the PIP Specialist Training if they have not yet done so.  

Eligible candidates will have Doctoral level training or equivalent in

  • Clinical or Counselling Psychology (BPS) Professional registration with HCPC
  • Child and Adolescent Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy (ACP or BPC)
  • Adult Psychodynamic or Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, BPC (Jungian Analyst, Adult Psychoanalyst; Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist  or UKCP (under the Council for Psychoanalysis and Jungian Analysis section)
  • Systemic Family Therapy (UKCP College of Family & Systemic Psychotherapists)

Training Pathways

There are 2 pathways: Psychoanalytic and Psychodynamic. The difference is the frequency of personal analysis you have had or are having with a BPC (British Psychoanalytic Council) registered analyst. If for ex you have already had 4 years + of 3-4 weekly analysis you will be eligible to apply for a psychoanalytic registration. If you have had 1x or 2x weekly for 2 years + you will be eligible for the psychodynamic section.

This course requires monthly attendance for one day per month in person at the bpf. The weekly supervision is online.


Do I need to be a psychologist- counselling or clinical, or a child/adult psychotherapist or psychoanalyst to be eligible? Yes.  You will need to have current professional clinical registration with a recognized professional body such as HCPC (Health and Care Professions Council), UKCP, BPC, ACP (Association of Child Psychotherapists), or BPS.

Do I have to have a psychoanalytic background to take the PIP (Parent Infant Psychotherapy) specialist training? No, if you do not have a psychoanalytic background then you can take our ‘Foundations’ course and a psychoanalytic Infant Observation course. NB You would need to have had 2 years and be in ongoing minimum 1x weekly psychoanalytic psychotherapy with a BPC accredited psychoanalytic psychotherapist.

Will I need to be in psychoanalytic therapy/ psychoanalysis?  Yes, The BPC position on training therapy is that you must have had previously or be in psychotherapy with a psychoanalytic psychotherapist for at least 2 years, minimum once weekly psychoanalytic psychotherapy (up to 3-4 x weekly for a registrant who wishes to become registered as psychoanalytic vs psychodynamic PIP).  

What if I have had a personal / training analysis (4-5 x weekly) in my previous training  for over 5 years? if you are already analytically trained (Adult/Child Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist) and have had e.g. 5 years + of personal psychoanalysis then we require you to have 1 x monthly (min) sessions with a psychoanalytic Psychotherapist (BPC accredited)  as ongoing consultations during your training.

I have trained as an art psychotherapist/ psychodynamic couple therapist registered with BACP. The BACP is not listed, am I eligible to apply?  Or I am a Social Worker with HCPC registration? Unfortunately, these are not eligible prerequisite trainings – refer to the Q above.


Can I pay in instalments? Yes, if you would prefer to make payment in instalments then this is fine, just make sure you let the course administrator know. They can the suggest a payment schedule.

Are there any bursaries/scholarships? Currently not.


 What is the time commitment for this training throughout the 18 months?

The average time commitment is approx. 8 hours a week in term time. This involves all taught hours and self-learning but can increase if you have a full caseload (4) of training cases and personal therapy. Please note that the week (3rd Thurs of the month) when the teaching and groups take place will involve attendance at the bpf for the full Thursday over a period of 18 months. Supervision is weekly online for 24 months (additional 6 months after the taught aspect is over).

Can I apply if I am based abroad? As you would need to attend the course every month in person, this may be challenging but could be discussed. The need for translation of case material brought to supervision is also to be thought about if you are not working in English.

£11300 for the whole course (2 years). This can be paid in instalments.

Additional costs:

Personal therapy

Bpf trainee membership (£144.45 p/a)

For more information about fees, and paying in instalments, please contact Sandra Pereira, PIP Course Administrator: [email protected]

The building has limited access – please call us on 020 8452 9823, or email [email protected], to discuss your needs.

  • The next intake is January 2026 and applications are not currently being accepted. You can download an a past application form to review the requirements. Sign up to our newsletter to be informed of when applications open again.
  • To register your interest for this training, please email: [email protected] 
  • The application fee of £75 should be paid when your application form is submitted. Please click here to make a payment
  • Those shortlisted will be invited to an interview.  
  • Applicants may also be required to have a clinical interview with the training consultant 
  • A final offer of a place on the training will be offered at the discretion of the interviewers 



Infant Observation Conference – Date: 20th July 2024. Time: 10am – 1pm. Venue: The bpf house, 37 Mapesbury Road NW2 4HJ

This event is open to anyone interested in infant observation, whether qualified or in training, considering training, already following an infant observation course, or just simply curious!