In June of 2007, legislation was passed to establish a College of Psychotherapists and Regulated Mental Health Therapists of Ontario. In September of 2009, a Transitional Council was named to develop the policies and procedures of that college.
The Council is expected to complete its work in the next year, so that the College will become functional early in 2014. At that time, all who use the title “psychotherapist” in Ontario will have to be members of the new College, unless they are already members of a College that has access to the “controlled act” of psychotherapy (medicine, psychology, nursing, social work, or occupational therapy).
We understand that as a prospective TIRP student, you would want to know, first, what the new College will require for membership. We recommend that to address the question you first go to the website (link located in first sentence above). Click on The Regulations, and then on Registration Regulation, under Related Resources. You can download the Regulation in PDF file format, which consists of the regulations themselves (left-hand column) and paragraphs that give a rationale for and some explanation of each regulation (middle and right-hand columns).
In brief, the Registration Regulation (see especially section 5) requires that in order for you to become a Registered Psychotherapist, you will need:
1. to have graduated from a training program in psychotherapy that (a) includes at least 360 hours of training, and (b) has as a prerequisite an undergraduate degree,
2. to have completed 450 hours of direct client contact and at least 100 hours of supervision of those hours,
3. to have undergone specific training in the safe and effective use of self in your modality of psychotherapy,
4. to have passed a Registration Exam that tests competencies to practice psychotherapy, and
5. to have completed a jurisprudence and professional practice e-learning module.
Having understood the gist of the regulation requirements, you would then want to know: How will the TIRP program prepare me to meet those requirements?
1. (a) The TIRP 3-year program currently amounts to a total of more than 300 training hours. In 2013-14, a fourth, optional “registration year” will be added to the curriculum to more than meet the 360-hour requirement, and to cover specific Registered Psychotherapist competencies not currently part of the 3-year program in relational psychotherapy. (b) TIRP expects its applicants to present at least an undergraduate degree or an equivalent with reference to a TIRP prior learning assessment process.
2. TIRP provides and requires 100 hours of supervision for graduation, and students can link with the TIRP low-cost referral service to accumulate at least 450 hours of direct client contact in relation to those hours of supervision.
3. As is the case in any training program in psychodynamic psychotherapy, TIRP’s requirement of ongoing personal psychotherapy while in the training program is understood to be the key component in understanding and using self well and wisely in a therapeutic relationship.
4. As an experiential training program that emphasizes the integration of theory and direct, supervised practice, TIRP prepares students well for the Registration Exam that focuses on the appropriate use of entry-to-practice competencies in simulated therapy situations.
5. Professional ethics are integrated into all phases of TIRP training, and part of the registration year course work will be a review of jurisprudence and professional practice guidelines.
It’s important to remember that as of September, 2012, the Registration Regulation as referenced above has been passed by the Transitional Council, but is still in the process of review by the Ministry of Health and Longterm Care. The legislation, with its regulations, has not yet been officially proclaimed, and until that day, TIRP faculty can only continue to pay close attention to what unfolds, remaining in communication with its students, past, present, and future.
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