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Martino, M.S. (2003). Problems in Psychoanalytic Education. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 51(1):301-309.

(2003). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 51(1):301-309

Problems in Psychoanalytic Education

Mary San Martino

Daniel Jacobs, supervisor and teacher at the Boston Psychoanalytic Institute, introduced the panel members as teachers, supervisors, recent graduates, and a fourth-year candidate, who collectively reflected the flux and diversity in the current thinking regarding psychoanalytic theories and psychoanalytic education. Jacobs stressed the variety of perspectives and different levels of experience represented on the panel.

As moderator, Jacobs sought responses to questions pertaining to four areas of psychoanalytic education, beginning with curriculum. He invited the panel to comment on how the curriculum is developed and taught at their respective institutes in a climate of competing theories of the mind. Does one curriculum fit all candidates? How are the different individual needs of today's diverse candidates met in our present programs?

Alan Skolnikoff (San Francisco Psychoanalytic Institute) started the discussion by emphasizing the challenge of teaching a classroom of candidates of varied ages, experience, and interests, in such a way as to make concepts mean something and to highlight ideas in contrast. He used the example of approaching the concept of “resistance” comparatively, from the points of view of several models. Skolnikoff stressed that the enthusiasm of the teacher is vital to the process, and he suggested that, given the scarcity of candidates in some years, an individualized tutorial system might be more effective than classes in some situations.

Helen

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