Centre for Continuing Education

Interpersonal Psychotherapy Course: Level A

Psychiatry. Encouraging a healthier community.

COVID-19 update: arrangement of our courses

We are now delivering courses online and in-person. Please check the delivery format of each class before enrolling.

Please note that course materials (excluding prescribed texts) are shared electronically within 48 hours of course commencement. Printing is not available.

This introductory Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) training course is open to health care practitioners with an interest in psychotherapy and/or counselling. It is strongly recommended for mental health clinicians as well as those in primary care providing brief counselling. Upon completion of this course, you will be equipped to conduct IPT.

Students and practitioners in training as well as experienced clinicians are all welcome.

Developed and delivered by the Discipline of Psychiatry at Sydney Medical School, the University of Sydney, and open to all health professionals for continuing professional development.

About Interpersonal Psychotherapy

Interpersonal Psychotherapy is an empirically validated treatment for a variety of psychiatric disorders. The evidence for IPT supports its use for a variety of affective disorders, anxiety disorders, and eating disorders, and for a wide range of patients from children and adolescents to the elderly.

IPT is recognised as an efficacious psychotherapy by the American Psychiatric Association, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence in the UK, and the International Cochrane Collaboration. It is also recognised by the Australian healthcare system. There are now over 250 empirical studies supporting the efficacy and effectiveness of IPT.

IPT is a time-limited psychotherapy that focuses on interpersonal issues, which are understood to be a factor in the genesis and maintenance of psychological distress. Interpersonal foci include grief and loss, interpersonal disputes, and role transitions, making IPT suitable for a wide range of problems. The targets of IPT are symptom resolution, improved interpersonal functioning, and increased social support. Typical courses of IPT range from 6-20 sessions with provision for maintenance treatment as necessary.


By the end of this course, you should be able to:

  • conduct a course of IPT
  • construct an interpersonal inventory
  • construct an interpersonal formulation
  • construct an interpersonal timeline
  • list the critical elements of IPT
  • describe the differences between IPT and psychodynamic psychotherapy.


This course covers the following topics:

  • IPT theory
  • evidence of efficacy
  • initial phase of IPT
  • middle phase of IPT
  • role transitions
  • grief and loss
  • interpersonal disputes
  • conclusion of IPT
  • maintenance treatment with IPT.

Delivery style

Online delivery via the platform Zoom (approximately 16 hours of class time).

Upon enrolment, you will be given access to pre-course reading that gives you the necessary background information to interpersonal psychotherapy.

A wide range of teaching methods will be used including didactic presentations, interactive small group activities, case studies and video reviews. Through hands-on activities, you will learn how to construct an interpersonal inventory and formulation, an interpersonal timeline and an interpersonal conflict graph. You will also learn how to apply specific IPT techniques in therapy and provide continuing maintenance treatment.

IPT Certification

At the conclusion of this training course, you will be given a workshop post-test to complete. If you complete the post-test, you will receive IPT Level A certification from the Interpersonal Psychotherapy Institute. Opportunities will be provided for ongoing supervision individually and in groups.


Title: Interpersonal Psychotherapy: A Clinician’s Guide (2nd Edition)
Authors: Scott Stuart, Michael Robertson
Publisher: CRC Press
ISBN: 9781444137545
Publication Date: 31/08/2012

A copy of Chapter 3 of this textbook, The Structure of Interpersonal Psychotherapy, is included in the course materials for this IPT training.


  • Expert trainers
  • Central locations
  • Course materials – yours to keep
  • CCE Statement of Completion

What others say.

  • A wonderful two days delivered by the facilitator. It affirmed so much of what I believe is effective practice and I am already using the tools.

  • A very personable, engaging and knowledgeable presenter. The course was pitched at a good level and met the aims stated. IPT is definitely a therapy I feel will benefit my clients. Highly recommended.

  • A very practical course where we were shown how to actually apply the techniques. Not just theory. I would highly recommend this!

  • This course was short, sweet and very interactive – very useful for work in the field.

  • An interesting and informative course with multiple perspectives because participants were from different disciplines.

  • Well-organised, informative, with an excellent balance of didactic teaching, practical hands-on exercises and the opportunity to ask questions. Tutor engaged the class very well (a good size – not too large), kept me interested (the whole weekend!), and was very receptive to comments/feedback.

  • Tutor and materials were excellent, no complaints at all. The food and drinks were excellent, venue conveniently located in pleasant setting.

  • The day went super quick. This course is amazing with great interaction, easily understood and an excellent workbook.

  • Give us more such high quality courses, please! This is something with great practical value for our practice!

  • Well structured program with plenty of opportunity to ask questions. Well facilitated.

  • Fabulous presenter – warm, engaging and very knowledgeable.

  • A very professionally-run program; well paced, very informative and useful. I can see myself using IPT in my current counselling practice.

  • A fantastic course! Presented so well and with easy to apply techniques.

  • The presenter of this course was fantastic – communication was excellent and was able to boil down numerous concepts and theories into practical terms.

  • Another well organised event with a very useful manual.

  • A nice balance of teaching and practical exercises that reinforced my learning.

What others say.

  • A very practical course where we were shown how to actually apply the techniques. Not just theory. I would highly recommend this!
  • Fabulous presenter - warm, engaging and very knowledgeable.
  • An interesting and informative course with multiple perspectives because participants were from different disciplines.
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