Karen Horney Psychotherapy and Psychoanalytic Institute in China

Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Program


In 2016 we established the “Karen Horney Psychotherapy and Psychoanalytic Institute in China” and began in Guangzhou, China.  This program currently provides training and certification in psychodynamic psychotherapy and membership into the American Institute for Psychoanalysis. The mission of the Karen Horney Psychotherapy and Psychoanalytic Institute in China is to build a self-sustaining training program for the professional development of psychodynamic psychotherapy and psychoanalysis in China.  The response from the professional community has been so outstandingly positive, that in the Fall of 2016 we drew applicants from the regions of Xi’an and Shanghai, while still maintaining small and cohesive classes. Advanced AIP candidates have the opportunity to teach and supervise.

Like our New York City based program The Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Program at the Karen Horney Psychotherapy and Psychoanalytic Institute in China offers a two-year curriculum of academic courses, clinical experience, individual and group supervision and personal therapy. The program is designed to provide a basic knowledge of psychodynamically oriented psychotherapy.

Academic Courses

First Year

  • Horney Theory of the Split and Conflicted Self – 16 Weeks

This course will be an introduction to Horney’s Theory, emphasizing ongoing parental mistreatment and pervasive feeling of helplessness and anxiety as causal determinants of character pathology organized around aspects of self in conflict with the demands of a rigid, inflated, idealized self that dictates inner experience and insists on actualization in interpersonal relations. The course will cover Horney’s description of three pathological character types and the relationship between their intra-psychic conflicts and constricted interpersonal relationships.

  • Basic Technique of Psychodynamic Psychotherapy – 10 Weeks

This course will cover essential aspects of psychodynamic psychotherapy including practical matters such as setting fees, establishing the frame, managing boundaries as well as fundamental aspects of therapy technique such as developing a therapeutic alliance, maintaining a degree therapeutic neutrality, and integrating supportive interventions with clarification and interpretation of unconscious dynamics.

  • Clinical Seminar on Horneyian Technique – 10 Weeks

In this seminar clinical material will be presented to illustrate aspects of Horney’s writings on technique.  For Horney understanding the patient was the basis for all technique. It includes understanding the unconscious forces that drive the patient’s difficulties as well as the constructive forces the patient can draw upon. The standard tools of psychodynamic treatment are utilized including free association, dream analysis and interpreting components of unconscious conflict. Along with this however, is an emphasis on interpreting the here and now of the therapeutic relationship and. on the importance of providing “human help.” Seminal papers will illustrate the clinical material.

Advancement to the second year of training is based upon successful completion of the first year requirements of courses, individual and group supervision and clinical work.

Second Year 

  • Psychoanalytic Theories of Development – 10 Weeks 

This course will introduce the major early and contemporary theories of human development so that students gain an understanding of how development impacts psychological well-being and the origins of psychopathology. We will also look at how these theories impact and influence clinical treatment. Class discussion will serve to facilitate the application of theory to practice.

  • Clinical Seminar on the Narcissistic Personality – 10 weeks

Clinical material of a patient who presents with a narcissistic personality disorder will be presented to illustrate internal and external object relations, inflated self and object representations and typical transferences and defenses against painful affects such as shame and humiliation. Ways of working with these patients with these dynamics will be discussed. Relevant readings including Horney’s description of narcissistic personality organization and functioning will be included.

  • Clinical Seminar on the Borderline Personality – 10 weeks

Clinical treatment of a patient with a borderline personality disorder will be presented. Emphasis will be placed on addressing the difficulties encountered in treating these patients in dynamic psychotherapy. These include managing the frame, symbolizing split transference distortions, minimizing destructive self- and other-directed aggression, and clarifying separation conflicts contributing to chronic passivity. Relevant readings will be included.

  • Elaborations on Horney’s Split and Conflicted Self – 4 weeks

This course will involve reading and discussion of selected papers from the American Journal of Psychoanalysis that elucidate aspects of Horney’s description of pathological character formation that are particularly self-destructive and clinically relevant. Among these are papers on externalized living, alienation from self, vindictiveness, and attitudes toward effort.

Clinical Experience

Each psychodynamic psychotherapy student is required to see five hours of adult patients weekly in individual psychodynamic treatment.

If you are not seeing a psychotherapy patient within one month of beginning the Program, you should discuss this with the administrator at your campus. By the end of the first year, you will be expected to have a minimum of three patient hours per week. By December of your second year you should have five patient hours per week.


      • Individual Supervision

        Individual Supervisors in the Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Program are assigned to students in an attempt to best meet the student’s individual educational needs. You will be assigned your supervisor at the beginning of the semester.

        In the second year, you will be able to select your individual supervisor. If you have any difficulties in coordinating your individual supervision please contact administrator at the Guangzhou campus. The required number of supervision hours is 40 for each academic year.

        In the middle of the year, you and your supervisor are encouraged to review your progress, using the “Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Program – Evaluation of Clinical Work” Form. At the end of the year, your supervisor will fill out this form and review it with you, before submitting it to the Registrar.

      • Group Supervision

        Group supervision takes place once a week online. The address and start date will be provided to you in advance. You may have a different group supervisor each year. Group meets a minimum of 40 times each year.

      • Program Advisors

        Drs. Winarick and Lynch will also function as your Program Advisor. You should consult with them should you have any questions about the program and/or your progress in your training.

Personal Psychotherapy

Personal Psychotherapy at the frequency of at least one session per week is a requirement of the Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Program. If you do not have a therapist, please contact administrator at your campus. If you are already in therapy with someone who is not a graduate of the Institute, no change is required. However, we do need to verify your therapist’s credentials.

Completion of the Program

Following the fulfillment of all the requirements of the program, you will receive a Certificate in Psychodynamic Psychotherapy, acknowledging the completion of this postgraduate training.

Administrative Matters

Any questions about Clinic policies should be directed to the assigned administrator in your region. All administrative changes in your overall program must be approved by the Training Committee of the American Institute of Psychoanalysis.