Certified Transactional Analyst – Training and qualification
To begin training, you need to have satisfactorily completed a TA 101 course. To qualify as a Certified Transactional Analyst (CTA) in one of the four fields (see below) generally requires three to five years part-time study before doing written and oral exams.
Whilst training you will be supervised by an accredited TA supervisor. In addition, within your peer group, training might include case presentations and discussions, diagnosis and treatment planning, and audio or video tape critique.
Psychotherapy trainees are required to undergo therapy throughout training, however, therapy is strongly recommended for all trainees. The overall training process, including supervision and psychotherapy, places great emphasis on the resolution of personal issues as they arise from the process of working with clients.
Training in TA can continue for as long as you would like it to, it can be a life-long journey of discovery and development or it can be a brief introduction that opens your mind and gives you a better insight into yourself and your surroundings.
The Four Fields
Transactional analysis counselling is a professional activity within a clearly defined contractual relationship. The process enables clients to develop awareness, options and skills in daily life, through the enhancement of the individual’s strengths and resources. The aim is to increase the client’s autonomy in relation to the social and cultural environment.
In its educational application, transactional analysis offers a model for understanding personality, human development, communication and personal life patterns. It provides ways to describe and explain both internal and interpersonal behaviour, in an innovative and accessible manner. Because of its emphasis on the interactional aspects of communication, it is invaluable in all branches of education.
Transactional Analysis provides a systematic approach to understanding the links between human needs and behaviours, and the ways that organisations are effective or ineffective in solving their problems and serving their customers. Organisational consulting based on TA uses a contractual approach. Consultants maintain its theoretical accessibility, so that its concepts and ideas are readily understood and can be applied by people at all levels of an organisation.
The underlying philosophy of transactional analysis is respect for the intrinsic worth and dignity of humans and their capacity to change. These beliefs are fundamental to the quality and maintenance of the psychotherapeutic relationship. Equality is affirmed in the making of a therapy contract, in which the therapist and client can gain insight into conscious and unconscious forms of communication. Decisions about self, others and the world are made in childhood and have a significant influence on how we live our lives in the present. By analysing the transactions, games and unique life scripts, both therapist and client gain a picture of the client’s unconscious life plan which, once in awareness, can be changed and resolved.
For more detailed information on becoming a CTA see the ITAA Training and Exams Handbook.