Becoming an Accredited Balint Group Leader

The Balint society has a training programme leading to accreditation as a Balint leader. It is as follows:

  1. Leaders’ training workshops at Balint weekends and leaders training days – see events page
  2. Co-leading a group with an experienced, and accredited leader if possible or leading with supervision.
  3. Having individual supervision about your group from an accredited leader.
  4. Joining a leaders’ peer supervision workshop – see events page.

Supervision can be provided on a personal basis or in a group. It can be face to face or via skype or phone. Supervisors are accredited Balint group leaders.

Criteria for accreditation of Balint Group Leaders by the Balint Society UK  (February 2016)

The following are intended as guidelines and not prescriptive rules.  The intention is to be flexible and encouraging to those who show interest in training as Balint group leaders whilst indicating a desirable set of standards and encouraging the continual development of leaders. It is best to get in touch with the leadership subcommittee as soon as possible to clarify what might be best for you. The email contact is: leadership@balint.co.uk

The most important things are to have some experience in a Balint group yourself, and to engage in leadership training and supervision.

For a Balint group leader seeking accreditation, the criteria are:

  1. Is expected to be a member of the UK Balint Society.
  2. Has professional training in a health or health related field.
  3. Has acquired experience in ordinary Balint groups.
  4. Has a supervisor and demonstrates competencies in running a Balint group.  Will submit the written report/reference from the supervisor to the Balint Society Council.
  5. Competencies
    1. Encourage the development of a safe and free environment within the group and awareness of the importance of protecting the boundaries of the group.
    2. Focus the work on an exploration of the relationship between patient and the doctor/ health care professional, rather than seeking solutions or teaching.
    3. Awareness of group processes and unconscious processes that are likely to affect the task of the group.
    4. Openness to learning about their personal style in leading a group and awareness that their attitudes and responses will influence the dynamics of the group.
    5. Recognition that becoming an accredited Balint leader is not an end in itself and will require ongoing development as a leader.

6. Pathways to accreditation: these are the minimum requirements:

Balint group experience as a member

Has psychoanalytic training: At least 8 group sessions during or after professional training OR 2 Balint Society weekends as ordinary group member

Has NO psychoanalytic training: At least 20 group sessions in an ongoing group or at Balint Society weekends in ordinary Balint groups

Training requirements (all)

  • Co-lead a Balint group (20 sessions minimum) with a Balint Society accredited leader if possible.
  • Attend at least 2 Balint Society weekend leadership courses, or equivalent leadership training days provided by the Society.
  • Develop a portfolio and demonstrate competencies with a supervisor.
  • Have supervision on a group for a period of time until the supervisor is happy to do a written report and leader feels ready to apply. This would mean the leader is fulfilling the competencies outlined above.
  • Complete and submit the leadership form, and the supervisor’s report to the leadership group who then make a recommendation to the Balint Council
  1. The Supervisor
  • Is an accredited Balint group leader.
  • Will conduct supervision in the most appropriate way e.g face to face, skype, telephone.
  • May be a co-leader with trainee.
  • Will encourage the leader in training to make their own notes on groups they attend as participants and lead;
  • Discuss any need for any written presentation to supervisor.
  • Suggested supervisor fee £60 per hour, for negotiation. (2016)

8.  Application forms

These are available here or from the leadership group

Leadership accreditation application form 2016

Supervisor reference for Balint Leadership Accreditation application 2016