The learning trajectory required to engage in psychotherapy is not always clear. Depending on the place of residence of each, the regulations in the practice of Psychology in each country, and the motivations and needs that move us, we must find a way to enter this professional field by going to the centers training. that are more in line with what we want to do.
It’s not just about studying hard and well; furthermore, we need to find a training institution that gives us the size we need to become the psychologists we want to become. So … where to train as a therapist?
In this article, we will look at several tips on how to choose the centers in which to train to become a psychotherapist and how we can assess their quality.
Where to train as a therapist: how to choose where to study
Training to practice psychotherapy is not easy, especially given the wide variety of knowledge and skills required to work in this area of health. The type of training required to intervene psychologically in patients, it must cover broad facets of human behavior and the mental processes involved in it, which can hardly be achieved without the guidance and supervision of experts in the field.
On the other hand, it is precisely the fact that there is a wide range of knowledge to learn that makes many students feel lost when it comes to proposing a progression in their training course. After all, among so many thematic areas it is difficult to find a line to follow to sequentially internalize topics that help us understand how psychological therapy works, establishing new knowledge about those we have already acquired.
Fortunately, and although in order to engage in psychotherapy it is necessary to tailor the line of study to the unique interests that define us as individuals, in general it is possible to find a series of criteria that can help us. guide at the same time. decisions about where to study to become a psychologist. These basic criteria are as follows.
1. Check the clarity of the proposed program
If a training center does not provide a summary of the content that will be covered throughout their courses, that should be an early warning sign. Transparency regarding the type of subjects that will be taught in the classes it is a fundamental thing, and in which we will have to support each other to know if this option adapts to our needs.
Make sure they offer quality internships
It is imperative not to limit yourself to learning in terms of theory. In something as changeable and flexible as human behavior, it takes a lot more than the knowledge gained from books: we need to get used to doing case studies that test our skills in real time, in the most realistic contexts. possible and also similar to the professional on a daily basis depending on the training context.
There are centers that offer internships that direct students to other organizations where students can practice psychological intervention cases on patients. However, in this aspect, the centers are even better which allow to carry out practices without having to go to another center; that is, with patients from the very place where we are constantly learning. This way, theory and practice are better integrated, And a better match is possible between what is explained and discussed in classrooms and what is seen in cases treated with real patients.
An example is the Master in Integrative Psychotherapy at the Mensalus Institute (Barcelona), which offers both internships with patients from the center itself and courses and observations in which psychotherapists assist these people who come to the center. consultation., With students placed behind glass that hides them (even if the patient knows they are being observed).
In these cases, different types of learning are involved real-time problem solving: One of them places the pupils in the center of the action, and the other leaves them a space to inquire about what they see.
3. Pay attention to the paradigms you are starting from
The training centers you attend must be based on a clearly scientific conception of what psychology is. This means that it is necessary who base their teachings on well-constructed research with the aim of creating knowledge applicable to many contexts and to prove falsifiable and easy to test facts from other research teams.
In this sense, it is important that most of the content to be learned is based on the cognitive-behavioral paradigm, which is the one with the most evidence of effectiveness.
4. Review your student support options.
It is very common for incidents, doubts or small issues related to the availability to attend a class, the grading system or the need to contact teachers to answer important questions that arise during a class.
It is therefore essential to find out about the type of student support offered by the centers, especially via the Internet.
5. Check your planning compatibility options
Especially in postgraduate studies, it is good to value the possibility of continuing such studies without the schedules overlapping with other things, In a way that suits the other responsibilities of students in this profile. For example, if in order to attend a class you have to go to class at very different times from each other investing most of the day in spending three hours of class, this may exhaust us and prevent us from solving any problems. other needs.
6. Pay attention to the type of therapy in which it is formed
Don’t get carried away by what others are doing: if you are interested in a specific type of therapeutic intervention, don’t be afraid to choose a center where more emphasis is placed on this type of training. Of course, he assesses the risks of learning only about one type of therapy, taking into account the context in which you plan to work and the competition that there will be. Ideally, you do not lose an overview of the psychotherapy applied to a certain variety of health conditions, even if the focus is on two or three specific problems.