Licensure-Qualifying Program in Psychoanalysis

The Licensure-Qualifying Program in Psychoanalysis is our training program for suitable candidates with a master’s degree in any field, whether they are licensed or not, who want to become a Licensed Psychoanalyst.

The program, which encompasses child, adolescent, parent and individual adult work, usually takes five years part time, though candidates may elect to take as few as four years or longer than five years. Graduates will receive an HFI Certificate of Completion, after which they may apply to New York State’s Office of the Professions for licensing and a two-year limited permit, allowing them to sit the state licensing exam and accrue any more clinical hours needed for licensing. Once they have become Licensed Psychoanalysts and have also met any remaining Institute requirements for HFI’s full Program in Psychoanalysis, they would also be eligible to receive an HFI Certificate in Psychoanalysis.

Candidates start by learning the essential elements of play therapy and working with parents or primary caregivers, while expanding and deepening their knowledge of psychoanalytic theory and technique. In child work, clinical sessions are used to treat children and adolescents, while collateral sessions are held with parents or primary caregivers.

Candidates spend their first few years working clinically in one of the Institute’s child-treatment centers with children, adolescents and their parents or primary caregivers. For the final two or three years of the program, candidates may have the option of moving to another of the Institute’s clinical settings where their work may focus more on parents as adult clients or on other individual adult clients.

Full details this and all the programs are contained in the Institute’s catalogue:
click here to download a PDF of our Catalogue.

Application Requirements


Applicants should hold at least a master’s degree in any field from a program recognized by the New York State Education Department and be at least 21 years of age. Please see the Institute’s Application Form.

In interviewing applicants, Harlem Family looks for broad humanistic interests, seriousness of intent, potential for good clinical skills, intellectual development, and a high capacity for empathy. Copies of their licenses, transcripts of at least one graduate degree in a program recognized by New York State and at least two letters of recommendation are required.

Program Requirements


Licensing as a Licensed Psychoanalyst in New York State requires the successful completion of a 1,350-hour education component and a 1,500-hour clinical-experience component under appropriate supervision. A licensure-qualifying program covers just the education component.

The Institute’s 1,350-hour licensure-qualifying education program involves at least 430 hours of post-master’s coursework, 300 hours of experience in the clinical practice of psychoanalysis,150 hours of individual clinical supervision of that casework, including 50 hours with one supervisor on a single case, and 300 hours of personal psychoanalysis at least two to four times a week.

Clinical Experience


Candidates are encouraged to remain at the Institute to complete the 1,500 clock-hours of clinical experience required for licensing as a Licensed Psychoanalyst and also to undertake any additional work to graduate, once licensed, from the Institute’s full Program in Psychoanalysis with its Certificate in Psychoanalysis.

Remaining at the setting ensures continuity for patients as well as for candidates. However, those who choose to transfer to another Institute after receiving their Certificate of Completion will be treated the same as those who remain.

Click here to download of PDF of our Catalogue, which contains full details of the program.


Apply now for psychoanalytic training starting in February and September.

Download our Admission Application.


Catalogue & Training Manual

The Institute's catalogue describes its training programs in detail.

Download a PDF of our Catalogue.




The Institute's faculty, drawn by Harlem Family's mission to serve children and families in underserved neighborhoods, come from a broad range of New York's psychoanalytic institutes.

All the Institute’s supervisors are licensed graduates of psychoanalytic institutes. All supervisors are required to have been practicing as licensed clinicians competent in psychoanalytic work for at least three years.


The Institute welcomes people of diverse backgrounds and doesn’t discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, color, creed, national origin, age, physical disability, marital status, gender or sexual orientation in any aspect of its functioning or programs.

Clinical Settings

The Institute’s clinical facilities are located in schools or community-based organizations, where its therapy rooms are equipped with toys, games and other materials for weekly sessions. Since schools and community-based organizations are convenient centers of neighborhood life, HFI therapists are able to maintain consistent connections with the children and adults they work with. An HFI liaison assists the Candidates with referrals for the duration of their training.

LMSW Applicants

The Institute welcomes applications from Licensed Masters in Social Work who want to undertake psychoanalytic training toward psychoanalytic certification while simultaneously using their clinical hours in this program toward their License in Clinical Social Work.

They should apply for the full Program in Psychoanalysis or the shorter Program in Child & Adolescent Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy. They may transfer from this shorter program to the full program at any time.

Their casework will be supervised by an LCSW who is certified in psychoanalysis by a recognized psychoanalytic institute or is otherwise psychoanalytically competent. The LCSW license includes psychoanalysis in its scope of practice.

Applicants With
Other Mental-Health

Applicants who hold licenses or master's degrees in mental-health counseling, creative-arts therapy or marriage and family therapy should enroll in the Institute's Licensure-Qualifying Program in Psychoanalysis because licenses in those fields don’t include psychoanalysis in their scope of practice.

Without psychoanalysis in their scope of practice, they may not practice psychoanalysis except through a licensure-qualifying program, unless they embark on training elsewhere for one of the other licenses that include psychoanalysis in their scope of practice. The Institute received state approval to introduce a licensure-qualifying program in August 2015.