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This page provides links to the information about approved training for psychotherapists who are interested in becoming ISST certified Schema Therapists. 

Training Guidelines 

This page provides information on the training required to meet that component of certification. This training can be taken as a complete program at one ST training program or an Independent Program can be put together from the curriculum components of a variety of programs as long as they add up to covering the entire required ST certification curriculum.   Here you will find the latest requirement for meeting the training requirements to apply for certification in Schema Therapy.

At the request of training program directors in a number of countries and with their input, the EB has developed a process for granting exceptions to the  current academic requirement (Masters degree or higher) to be able to train in ST for certification. Below is the decision made by the EB.

Procedure: Making exceptions to the Masters degree or higher academic requirement to begin training in Schema Therapy

 In countries where a Masters degree is not the only route to the approved practice of psychotherapy, exceptions to the Masters degree requirement to apply for ST training will be based upon the practice of that country. Recommendations for the requirements to be met for exceptions in each country where this issue applies will be made by consensus of the ISST Approved Training Program Directors of that country. The requirements for an exception to apply for Standard level certification only may also be specified.

The ISST Executive Board will evaluate and approve the final requirements. In this way a standard practice for making exceptions can be established and all applicants treated in the same manner. In the event that an ISST member applicant disagrees with denial of an exception the appeal process outlined for certification issues will be followed. This process can be found on the ISST website.

Approved 10-3-15 ISST Executive Board Meeting

Training approved by the ISST

The only training that ISST currently approves or provides certificates of attendance for are those that are designed to specifically meet components of the approved ST Certification Curriculum. The only training that ISST evaluates is that offered by or coordinated with the  ISST approved ST Certification Training programs. Often a program has a number of faculty who are all ISST certified advanced level trainer-supervisors offering components of the certification curriculum. When these faculty members provide training for certification it is in collaboration with a training program and participants will receive a certificate of attendance from the approved training program on a "Module Certificate", which has the signatures of the program director and the actual trainer. These certificates must list the hours of dyadic and didactic hours and the number of participants. Any ISST Certified trainer-supervisor in good standing (ISST membership is current) can offer whatever additional training in Schema Therapy that they wish. However, it is only training that is coordinated with the approved training programs, which can be used to count toward the required hours for certification. Other ST training, for example offered at the biannual conference, can be used to meet the new ISST continuing education requirement or for other professional CE requirements. Certification training is a separate category, which is specifically tied to the currently required curriculum.


For questions regarding what training counts toward certification email the T & C Coordinator.

Training Programs 

This section has a link to a  list all of the 52 ISST Approved Schema Therapy Certification Training Programs. All listed programs are authorized by ISST to provide the 25 didactic and 15 dyadic hours required for certification.

Applying for offering an ISST Approved Schema Therapy Certification Training Program

The application for training program approval can be found in the current forms section here.

The requirements that must be met for a training program to be approved can be found here.

More information about applying for approval as an ISST Certification Training Program can be found here.

Training program applications should be emailed to the T&C Coordinator for review. You will be informed if there are any requirements not met or if further explanation or description is needed. The application is then sent to the ISST Executive Board, which votes regarding approval. You will be informed by email of the Executive Board's decision. The appeal process should you not receive approval is described here. If your application is clear and complete this process would take no longer than 2 months. 

Why Schema Therapy?

Schema therapy has been extensively researched to effectively treat a wide variety of typically treatment resistant conditions, including Borderline Personality Disorder and Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Read our summary of the latest research comparing the dramatic results of schema therapy compared to other standard models of psychotherapy.

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