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Kohut, H. (1968). The Evaluation of Applicants for Psychoanalytic Training. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 49:548-554.

(1968). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 49:548-554

The Evaluation of Applicants for Psychoanalytic Training

Heinz Kohut

The participants of the 1967 conference on psychoanalytic training were prepared for the meeting by the three pre-circulated contributions published in this issue: Bird's essay which, starting from a broadly based discussion of certain general problems of psychoanalytic education, focuses on the methodology of evaluation; Heimann's paper which deals not only with the measures which we apply—overtly or covertly—when we attempt to form opinions about the suitability of those who wish to enter psychoanalytic training but which also touch on some profound problems regarding the historical position of psychoanalysis and its future; and Calder's compilation of the instructive replies to a questionnaire about evaluation procedures which had been distributed to psychoanalytic training institutions all over the world.

My own contribution, which rests on the preceding three and takes their knowledge for granted, will unavoidably repeat some thoughts that have already been expressed in them. Certain areas, however, which were only touched on by the others—such as that concerning the problem of the (quantifiable) assessment of psychological functions and qualities; and that of the influence of the evaluation process on the candidate and on the total analytic milieu—will here be taken up more explicitl. For the rest it is the aim of this essay to serve as a summarizing statement and as a preview of some of the opposing opinions faced by the Pre-Congress.

Since the subject matter of the conference is the evaluation of the applicant for psychoanalytic training, the centre of our attention concerns the first step of the three-step procedure (evaluation—prediction—decision) which makes up the process of selection.

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