Training in Cognitive Analytic Therapy


CAT is a versatile approach to psychological help and there are three main areas of the application of CAT in practice which is reflected in our training:

  • CAT as a psychological therapy focusing on a collaborative educational and therapeutic relationship
  • CAT as a consultative or team training approach working with the context and systems around the client in difficulty
  • CAT as a method of teaching relational thinking and relational skills to enhance general professional and psychological skills in working with people.

CAT is a broadly based psychological therapy focusing on a collaborative educational and therapeutic relationship

Our training courses and training routes emphasise these elements to differing degrees.
Our introductory courses are not accredited whilst all other levels of training are.

Please scroll to bottom of this page for current training courses or click here to jump to the current courses.

ACAT Non Accredited Courses

Introductory Courses

These are short, introductory workshops usually of one or two days in length and are intended to outline the philosophy and core concepts of CAT theory and practice for professionally qualified staff who are new to CAT. While certificates of attendance for CPD may be given, the courses are not assessed and do not lead to a qualification. Attending an introductory course is not an absolute requirement for staff wishing to apply for accredited CAT training, but they do give a good idea of what CAT and CAT training involves and applicants for accredited training should demonstrate that they have this level of understanding as preparation for further training [booking via the ACAT website].

For more information about Introductory Courses please click here.

"Very good training, learned a lot and inspired further interest!"

"It has been one of the best, informative, useful, understandable and enjoyable training sessions I have ever experienced"

"The whole day - really interesting content and the presentation was excellent - very professional and maintained my interest throughout to the extent that I'm now very motivated to look further into CAT."

Bespoke Introductory Courses:

ACAT can provide ‘bespoke’ introductory workshops, so if your organisation or Trust is interested in hosting a day, please get in touch with the ACAT office to explore the possibilities: or phone 01305 263511

ACAT Accredited Courses

ACAT accredited courses can be considered in terms of two possible routes or pathways, specifically regarding whether they are likely to lead to a 'CAT career' or not. The CAT Therapist (career route) is for those using CAT in one-to-one therapy roles. The ‘non-career’ route is focused on CAT Case Management Skills, with a contextual focus and suited to generic workers or practitioners not in therapy roles. CAT would be used to enhance your current role. 

CAT Skills Training - non career route

For those interested in the non-career route (CAT Case Management), ACAT offers a six month course designed for those working in the health and caring professions to acquire a basic understanding of CAT and to apply it to their routine work, rather than to practice CAT as an individual therapy. The training may be delivered to whole teams or to groups of interested individuals and it can be offered in a range of formats, to suit the requirements of the group. These courses aim to enhance skills in team working with complex clients, psychologically informed case management and understanding the impact of working within a context, usually with complex clients.  The award is the ACAT Six Month Skills Level Certificate in Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) (Case Management). Possible applications include IAPT / SMI - PD case management; secondary care MDT team care CAT informed care co-ordination; specialist e.g. complex cases and forensic settings.

For more information about CAT Skills Trainings please click here.

“It was one of the few things I have attended over the years where I felt I am really learning and developing as a practitioner”


For those interested in the CAT career route to offer CAT as a therapy, there are three levels of training in CAT theory and practice, all ACAT accredited with the option to take a modular route through these levels. The trainings are CAT Foundation, CAT Practitioner / Therapist and CAT Psychotherapist Training Courses.

ACAT has been recognised by the Centre for Workforce Intelligence (CfWI) allowing CAT Therapists/Practitioners to use the protected title Psychological Therapist

CAT Therapist / Practitioner Course - career route

This two year training aims to develop skills to practice CAT as a 1-1 therapy. It is open to trainees with a core profession and relevant experience. It leads to ACAT accreditation as a CAT therapist / CAT practitioner, allowing the graduate to practice CAT within their core profession. It consists of eight modules over two years consisting of theory, skills and supervised clinical case work and assessed through a six monthly clinical appraisal - four over the 2 year taught course; two clinical case studies and two essays. Trainees must complete a sixteen session CAT training therapy. Entry to the two year course is through application, interview and attendance at a CAT introductory workshop (two days) or equivalent.

For more information about the CAT Therapist / Practitioner Course please click here

“I have enjoyed the course and learned a great deal. I have especially enjoyed the teaching from people who really thoroughly know the model and are clearly motivated to help us learn in a supportive environment. I would highly recommend this course.”

CAT Foundation Course - career route

This one year course is equivalent to the year one of a CAT Therapist / Practitioner course in academic and clinical content and written work requirements. The therapy component is a brief personal reformulation experience. This course was designed following an invitation to develop a CAT training for IAPT workers. The Foundation Course is also offered by some DClinPsychol training courses in fulfilment of the British Psychological Society (BPS) requirements for clinical psychologists to train in two models. The award is ACAT Foundation Certificate in CAT Practice. The Foundation Course is modular and has been designed for trainees satisfactorily completing the course to apply to do a second year in any practitioner/therapist training course nationally.

For more information about the CAT Foundation Course please click here

"Attending the CAT Foundation Course has enabled me to add a more robust framework to my work as a Psychological Therapist within IAPT - a service where sessions are most definitely time-limited! Equally for my clients it appears to allow them a quicker 'grasp' of past and present relating and behaviour patterns and therefore they can identify the potential for change more easily."


Following completion and accreditation as a CAT Therapist / Practitioner…….

Completion and accreditation as a CAT Therapist / Practitioner is a transition point to further CAT (psychotherapist UKCP) training and ACAT supervisor and, trainer development / accreditation. CAT Therapist / Practitioner training is required as a minimum basis for using CAT as a consultancy model, specifically for taking the consultant role; for running CAT groups, for delivering brief reformulation sessions in CAT Skills and Foundation Courses.

Psychotherapy Training - career route

The CAT Psychotherapy training course enables CAT Practitioners / Therapists to become Cognitive Analytic Psychotherapists via an additional two-year accredited training which leads to eligibility for full registration with the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP).

There is currently one Psychotherapy Training within ACAT, which is a two-year residential training (two year course with three residential weeks per year), known as the Interregional Residential ACAT Psychotherapy Training (IRRAPT). Applicants to the Psychotherapy Training must have successfully completed a two-year CAT Practitioner training.

For more information on Psychotherapy Training please click here

“The IRRAPT training has been transformative for me. CAT is now part of who I am and not simply something I do.”

“Doing the IRRAPT (training) has been an experience of being able to read, talk and think with other like-minded people, while learning about yourself through those very relationships. It has expanded and deepened my learning from the practitioner course.”


Supervised Clinical Practice as part of CAT Trainings || Appendix 1

It is important to note that all trainees undertaking accredited training courses must be supervised by a supervisor who is both accredited by ACAT and a current member of ACAT. For training at Foundation, Practitioner and Psychotherapist level, supervision is 15 minutes minimum per client per week for all training cases. CAT’s preferred model is face to face group supervision but circumstances may arise when a group may not be possible for a part of a trainee’s training and we explore alternative arrangements. Supervision appraisals are conducted individually.
All accredited ACAT supervisors have completed the ACAT accredited supervisor training.

To see Appendix 1 Supervised Clinical Practice as part of CAT Trainings please click here

Personal Development and Personal Therapy as part of CAT Trainings || Appendix 2

As CAT is a relational approach, the way therapeutic work impinges on and requires the use of self and self-reflection is a core element of CAT training and supervision. We make a commitment to personal development in order to manage our own selves (roles and procedures) so that personal difficulties are not enacted unhelpfully with our service users in the working environment or on the course. At each level of training, there is a personal therapy component. At CAT Therapist / Practitioner level this is a 16 session CAT; at CAT Skills Case Management and Foundation Course level this involves a brief ‘personal reformulation’ experience; at Psychotherapist level trainees will be expected to commit to an ongoing programme of personal psychotherapy throughout the two years of the training.

To see Appendix 2 Personal Development and Personal Therapy as part of CAT Trainings please click here

Details about Personal Reformulation for Personal and Professional Development will be provided by the course at the start of training.
Alternatively ACAT members can click into ACAT Training Resources to access the downloadable document or  please click here

Please click here for more information about embarking on CAT training and further information about eligibility for CAT ‘career route’ training.   


ACAT Supervisor Training

ACAT Supervisor Training is based upon an apprenticeship model provided by ACAT for experienced CAT practitioners and psychotherapists to progress towards accreditation as a CAT supervisor. All accredited ACAT supervisors have completed the ACAT accredited supervisor training. The entry requirements and supervisor training pathway and accreditation can be accessed by ACAT members in Supervisor Training Guidelines and Application.

If you are an ACAT accredited Psychotherapist and also a member of UKCP you will be eligible on ACAT accreditation as a supervisor to join the UKCP Directory of Approved Supervisors as a Recognised Training Supervisor (RTS).  
If you are an ACAT Practitioner and you become accredited as a CAT Supervisor you will be eligible to join the HIPC Directory of Approved Supervisors as a Recognised Training Supervisor. 

For more information on ACAT Supervisor Training please click here  


Modular Structure of ACAT's Courses and Trainings

Please click here for a flow chart of ACAT's Courses and Trainings showing the modular structure.

MSc Cognitive Analytic Therapy

The MSc programme at Sheffield Hallam University is open to prospective MSc students who are interested to conduct research in CAT. They can apply via the Advancing Professional Practice Programme.
The contact is senior lecturer and CAT therapist James Turner (

For further information on the MSc Cognitive Analytic Therapy please click here


Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) and Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL):

APL as part contribution to CAT training:
Applicants for CAT Practitioner training can in principle 'count' a maximum of two CAT cases as part of the eight cases needed for that training. In exceptional circumstances, individuals may wish to have past training and experience recognised by ACAT as equivalent to its current standards and to count towards an award. Guidelines exist outlining procedures for this route.

For further information on APL and APEL please click here



Courses currently accepting applications at each of these levels are listed below (or via the relevant page accessed by the links)

What has been written about CAT?  Click here

Please direct any general enquiries about training to the ACAT Office in the first instance to:  Maria Cross at

Revised February 2017


Current Training Courses

CAT Introductory Events

CAT Skills Trainings

1 Year CAT Foundation Courses

CAT Therapist / Practitioner Trainings

CAT Psychotherapy Trainings

CAT Supervisor Trainings

CAT Training Events

MSc Cognitive Analytic Therapies

ACAT Calendar for September
1111th September 2017
CAT Introductory Event: Two day Introduction to Cognitive Analytic Therapy - offered by Collaborate
1515th September 2017
CAT Introductory Event: ACAT: Two Day Introduction to CAT
CPD Event: A CAT Approach to Organisational Dynamics - offered by Catalyse
Training Committee, Final date for submission of TC agenda Items
2020th September 2017
ACAT International Conference: 7th International CAT Conference
2121st September 2017
CPD Event: Mindfulness Retreat offered by Catalyst East Anglia
University of Nottingham
2222nd September 2017
ACAT AGM: ACAT Annual General Meeting 2017
University of Nottingham
Exam Board, Final Accreditation Submission Date
Trustees, Final Date for submission of Agenda Items
2323rd September 2017
University of Nottingham

Our Next 7 Courses

View all courses

01-10-17 Scotland CAT Practitioner TrainingPractitioner Level Training in Cognitive Analytic Therapy October 2017 - June 2019 Course Directors: Dee Affleck and Jamie Kirkland Applications are invited for places on a 2 year Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) Practitioner Level Training Course. ...

01-10-17 Brighton CAT Practitioner TrainingCognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) Practitioner Training Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust in association with ACAT Closing date for applications: 31st July 2017 CAT Practitioner Training Cognitive analytic therapy is a time limited psychothe...

03-10-17 North London CAT Practitioner Training2017-2019 North London CAT Practitioner Training October 2017-August 2019 There are a few places left - the application deadline has been extended to 23rd June 2017 The course is run by the Haringey Complex Care Team at Halliwick, St Ann’s Ho...

05-10-17 Catalyse CAT Practitioner TrainingPractitioner Training in Cognitive Analytic Therapy organised by Catalyse (formerly known as CAT North) October 2017 to July 2019 The CAT Practitioner Training is a two year trainin...

01-11-17 Dorset CAT Practitioner TrainingDorset CAT Practitioner Training November 2017 – October 2019 CAT is a time-limited therapy, normally 16 to 24 sessions, which integrates theories derived from cognitive psychology, and psychoanalytic therapy. It involves developing an active...

01-01-18 Inter-Regional Residential ACAT Psychotherapy Training in CAT (IRRAPT)Inter-Regional Residential ACAT Psychotherapy Training (IRRAPT) in Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) 2018 - 2019 Organised by The Association for Cognitive Analytic Therapy (ACAT) Leading to Accreditation as a CAT Psychotherapist with ACAT and with t...

16-01-18 CAT East/NSFT CAT Practitioner TrainingA Two year Cognitive Analytic Therapy Practitioner Training Course offered by CAT East / Norfolk & Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust Accredited by the Association for Cognitive Analytic Therapy (ACAT) This course commences in January 2018, with ele...

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