More about CAT

CAT is an integrative model of human development and of psychotherapy drawing on ideas as mentioned below. It is a fundamentally relational model, both in its view of human development and in its practice of psychotherapy. At its heart is an empathic, respectful and collaborative, meaning-making relationship between the client and therapist within the therapeutic boundaries.

What are the origins of CAT?

CAT was developed in the early 1980’s by Dr Anthony Ryle at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital in London. CAT developed as a public health response to the mental health needs of a busy inner London area, and this concern with access and equity remains at the heart of the model. He felt it important to offer a short-term focussed therapy for use in the health service; a therapy that integrated the best of different approaches to people’s problems and that could be researched and refined with the growing experience of clients and therapists.

Theoretically, CAT draws on:

  • Psychoanalytic concepts of conflict, defence, object relations and counter transference (particularly from Donald Winnicott). 
  • Ideas from activity theory and dialogism introduced by Lev Vygotsky and Mikhail Bakhtin.  (Dialogism is a particularly kind of dialogue, not limited to two people speaking to each other, but to the whole way in which we act towards each other and expect each other to act towards us.)
  • George Kelly's Personal Construct Theory and work with repertory grids; a focus on how people make sense of their world ("man as scientist") and on common sense, co-operative work with patients. 
  • From cognitive approaches involving step by step planning and measurement of change; teaching patients self-observation of moods, thoughts and symptoms.

What sort of problems can CAT help with?

CAT tries to focus on what a person brings to the therapy (‘target problems’) and the deeper patterns of relating that underlie them. It is less concerned with traditional psychiatric symptoms, syndromes or labels.

CAT has been widely used to help people who have experienced childhood physical, emotional or sexual abuse, neglect and trauma, including people who self-harm. CAT is also used with people with eating disorders, addiction problems (like drugs and alcohol), obsessional problems, anxiety, depression, phobias, psychosis and bipolar illness. CAT therapists also work with adolescents, older people and people with learning difficulties, and in forensic settings.

CAT is mostly offered to individuals, but it can also be used effectively with couples, in groups and to help teams understand the ‘system’ in which they work – an approach called ‘contextual reformulation’.

What Qualifications Can I Expect the Therapist to Have?

ACAT can confirm that all the therapists listed on the ACAT Register are accredited CAT Practitioners or Psychotherapists.

CAT Practitioners usually have either core training as a mental health professional (e.g. as a Psychiatrist, Psychologist, Nurse, Social Worker or Occupational Therapist,) with a minimum of two years post-qualification experience, or previous training in counselling to an accredited level followed by a two year training in Cognitive Analytic Therapy with accreditation following successful completion.

CAT Psychotherapists have qualified as CAT Practitioners and have undertaken an additional in-depth two year training leading to this qualification.

To search the register for an Accredited CAT Therapist click here.

To find an Accredited Private CAT Therapist click here.

Both CAT Practitioners and CAT Psychotherapists count as Psychological Therapists in the Centre for Workforce Intelligence Review

CfWI ReportThe Centre for Workforce Intelligence (CfWI) recently completed a Department of Health commissioned review of adult psychological therapies to improve workforce planning. It has recommended a consensus definition of what a psychological therapist is across all therapy modalities and provides data on what is currently known about this workforce - the focus is on non-IAPT services. The report is intended for policymakers and decision-makers across the NHS. ACAT took part in the consultations and we believe this is an important review from ACAT's perspective.

We are pleased that in April 2013, ACAT was accepted as one of the professional bodies currently providing training for psychological therapists. Importantly, the CfWI definition of a psychological therapist includes CAT Practitioners as well as CAT Psychotherapists, and CAT Practitioners are included within existing workforce numbers in the CfWI report.

The report can be found through this link   http://www.cfwi.org.uk/publications/improving-workforce-planning-for-the-psychological-therapies-workforce/

ACAT Calendar for February
Th
Fr
Sa
Su
Mo
Tu
We
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
88th February 2018
CAT Introductory Event: 2 Day Introduction to CAT
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28

Contact Details

ACAT Administration Manager:Maria Cross

ACAT Administrator:Alison Marfell

ACAT Financial Administrator:Louise Barter

Postal Address:ACAT
PO Box 6793
Dorchester
DT1 9DL
United Kingdom

Phone:+44(0) 1305 263 511

Email:admin@acat.me.uk

Office Hours:Monday to Friday
9am to 5pm

Our Next 20 Events

View all courses

26-02-18 Inter-Regional Residential ACAT Psychotherapy Training in CAT (IRRAPT)Inter-Regional Residential ACAT Psychotherapy Training (IRRAPT) in Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) 2018 A few places remain available for applications for the 2018 intake. Please register your interest NOW. The course is unlikely to run again unt...

02-03-18 Youth CAT CPD Day & AGM - Re-integrating YouthYouth CAT CPD event & AGM Re-integrating Youth #YouthCAT18 2nd March 2018, 09.30 – 16.00 Best Western Plus Peterborough Orton Hall Hotel & Spa The Village, Orton Longueville, Peterborough PE2 7DN For information and timetable cont...

09-03-18 ACAT: CAT and the Embodied MindKey Areas in the Application of Neuroscience to Psychotherapy, Trauma and CAT Introduction: A Taster and an Overview #acatemb18 Venue: The Augustana Centre, 30 Thanet Street, London, WC1H 9QH Times: 10am till 4:30pm The aim of this seminar is t...

17-03-18 The Psychotherapist's Self-Care - offered by ConferThe Psychotherapist's Self-Care Developing resilience in relation to the emotional pressures of our work With Elizabeth Wilde-McCormick and Anthea Millar While it is a given that psychotherapists robustly expose themselves to distressing stori...

19-03-18 States, Self-states and State Shifts - offered by CatalyseStates, Self-states & State Shifts: mapping & working with complexity using CAT’s Multiple Self States Model A one-day workshop led by Sarah Littlejohn and Dawn Bennett Hashtag: #CATmssm18 Date: Monday 19 March 2018 Time: 10:00a...

21-03-18 ACAT's Annual Meeting of Trainers and SupervisorsACAT's Annual Meeting of Trainers and Supervisors Wednesday 21st and Thursday 22nd March 2018 St Anne's College, Oxford, OX2 6HS #ACATtrain18 From 12 noon on Wednesday to 4 pm Thursday The meeting is open to all trainers and supervisors, ...

09-04-18 ACAT Relational Skills in CAT Supervision ResidentialRelational Skills in CAT Supervision A residential, intensive skills training course lasting two and a half days #ACATsup18 Aims This intensive two and a half day residential course is open to any CAT Practitioner interested in CAT supervision. ...

13-04-18 2 Day Introduction to CAT - offered by Catalyse#CATspace18 This hands-on two-day course takes place in Sheffield and is led by Sarah Littlejohn and Emma Taylor. It offers an introduction to the values, ideas, methods and skills of Cognitive Analytic Therapy. It combines short theoretical inputs ...

13-04-18 CAT Research Conference - a joint ACAT & Catalyse eventEncouraging to Engaged ~ A one-day research conference for CAT Practitioners #CATres18 Date: Friday 13th April 2018 Time: 9.30am to 4.30pm Venue: Manchester Conference Centre, Sackville Street, Manchester M1 3BB Flyer & programme now avai...

19-04-18 Introduction to Cognitive Analytic Therapy - offered by Jurai Darongkamas & Jeanette McLoughlinIntroduction to Cognitive Analytic Therapy Thursday 19th April & Friday 20th April 2018 9.30am – 4.30pm Queen Alexandra College, 49 Court Oak Road, Harborne, Birmingham, B17 9TG • Want to learn about CAT to build & keep good thera...

03-05-18 Introduction to CAT - a 2 day course offered by Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation TrustAn Introduction to Cognitive Analytic Therapy - offered by Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust A two-day course for mental health professionals Thursday 3rd and Friday 4th May 2018 Conference Room 2, East Brighton Community Mental ...

12-05-18 Working with CAT and Emotionally Intense Clients - offered by CAT SouthThis one-day workshop will cover the following: Introduction to personality disorder, including a discussion around the recent British Psychological Society publication: 'The Power Threat Meaning Framework'. CAT tools and approaches - what ...

22-05-18 Life is about collecting stories - offered by Collaborate#CATnarr18 Life is about collecting stories - what do yours say? A one-day workshop exploring the use of ideas from Narrative Therapy to add a new richness to your practice of Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) Narrative therapy This form of thera...

24-05-18 2 Day Introduction to CATIntroducing Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) #ACATintro518 A two-day introduction to the skills and concepts in practice, led by Steve Potter and Annalee Curran This highly-rated short course is offered by ACAT for people new to the CAT way of wor...

15-06-18 Two's company, is three a crowdTwo's company, is three a crowd? Including intimate others in sessions of individual CAT Presented by Alison Jenaway and Rajshree Weston #ACAT2318 Overview of the workshop: To consider the different ways of including intimate others in ind...

05-07-18 24th Annual ACAT Conference 2018Early bird booking is open until Monday 5th March 2018 for personal online and cheque payments only 24th Annual ACAT Conference 2018 Therapist authenticity, creativity and use of positive resources in cognitive analytic therapy Thursday 5th to Sa...

06-07-18 ACAT's Annual General Meeting 2018Notice of ACAT's Annual General Meeting 2018 Friday, 6 July 2018 Notice We hereby give notice that the ACAT Annual General Meeting 2018 will be held during the Annual ACAT Conference on the afternoon of Friday, 6th July 2018 at Keele Univers...

14-09-18 Two Day Introduction to CAT#ACATintro918 ACAT Introduction to Cognitive Analytic Therapy A two-day introduction to the skills and concepts in practice This highly-rated, short course is offered by ACAT for people new to the CAT way of working Friday, 14th and Saturday, 15t...

01-10-18 South London (formerly St Thomas’) Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) Practitioner TrainingSouth London (Formerly St Thomas’) Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) Practitioner Training Course Course Introduction 21st/22nd September 2018 Course commences October 2018 and ends July 2020 Organised by The Association for Cognitive Analytic...

04-10-18 CAT North Practitioner Training 2018-2020Catalyse / CAT North Practitioner Training - October 2018 (Manchester) A two-year training course in Manchester offered by Catalyse / CAT North commencing 4th October 2018. The course is for people with a core mental health profession leading to the...

Please help us by completing our NEW visitor survey... it will only take 5 minutes. Thanks!