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Anthroposophic psychotherapy is a relatively new discipline within the Medical Section of the School of Spiritual Science, having developed since the 1980s in contrast to anthroposophic medicine which has been developing since 1920. As such its knowledge base is limited. Anthroposophic psychotherapy research is thus by necessity primarily based on qualitative case-orientated research to develop theory and practice to broaden its knowledge base.


  1. To promote the development of anthroposophic psychotherapy as an integrative approach to psychotherapy based on anthroposophic-Goethean methodology,
  2. To utilise research-led teaching to develop anthroposophic psychotherapy practice,
  3. To help course participants to become advanced practitioners, achieve World Health Organization standards and, if required, achieve United Kingdom Council of Psychotherapy registration standards.

To achieve these aims the course will have a practitioner research element which will adapt the research principle expressed by Rudolf Steiner (in lectures entitled The Book of Revelation) in regard to anthroposophic medicine; namely to understand ‘each individual case thoroughly, regardless of the outcome’ by studying it ‘with all its idiosyncrasies’ before utilising statistical research (Steiner, 1924/1998, p.252).


Three long weekend seminars, two interim seminars, research supervision and tutorials.

Examples of 2022 programme:


Research methodology and its relevance to anthroposophic psychotherapy practice:

  • The broader research context in which anthroposophic psychotherapy takes place as we enter the heart of the Age of the Consciousness Soul. 
  • Quantitative research methodologies (surveys, statistics), qualitative research methods (grounded theory, phenomenology, ethnography, narrative, structured, semi-structured, unstructured interviewing, single case studies), creative qualitative methods (heuristics, autoethnography, narrative research) and anthroposophic-Goethean research methods of delicate empiricism (observation of phenomena, exact sensorial imagination, Imagination, Inspiration, Intuition).
  • Anthroposophic-Goethean research methods, anthroposophic psychotherapy practice and anthroposophical schooling for psychotherapists.
  • The seminar will also introduce the single case study research project enhanced with research methodology.

Lees, J. (2001), ‘Reflexive action research: developing knowledge through practice’, Counselling and Psychotherapy Research, 1(2): 132-138

Lees, J. (2005a), ‘Two research discourses’, Therapy Today, 16(8): 29-31.

Lees, J. and Freshwater, D. [eds] (2008). Practitioner-based Research: Power, Discourse and Transformation. London: Karnac Books.

Robson, C. (2002), Real World Research, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers


Anthroposophic psychotherapy practice, anthroposophic-Goethean research methodsand personal integration:

  • Rudolf Steiner’s spiritual phenomenological and experience-based research methods (for example, karma research).
  • The methodology underpinning ‘Dekkers and Dekkers overnight examination of casework’; utilizing the wisdom of the night and the spiritual world as part of the process of Imagination, Inspiration and Intuition; enhancing the anamnesis of the case using role plays, drama methods, the wisdom of the night and other creative methods.
  • Dekkers training exercises.
  • Personal integration principles.

Bortoft, H. (1986), Goethe’s Scientific Consciousness, Tunbridge Wells: Institute for Cultural Research

Palmer, S. and Woolfe, R. (2000), Integrative and Eclectic Counselling and Psychotherapy, London: Sage, 2000

Seamon, D. and Amrine, F. (1998), Goethe’s Way of Science, New York: SUNY

Steiner, R. (1886), A Theory of Knowledge Implicit in Goethe’s World Conception, Spring Valley, NY: Anthroposophic Press

Steiner, R. (1894), The Philosophy of Freedom, London: Rudolf Steiner Press

Steiner, R. (1909-10), Knowledge of the Higher Worlds, London: Rudolf Steiner Press, 1969

Steiner, R. (1924-5), Anthroposophical Leading Thoughts, London: Rudolf Steiner Press, 1973


  • Knowing the case in all its idiosyncrasies utilizing creative anthroposophic-Goethean research methodology, multidisciplinary
  • and the therapeuticum as a mystery centre for the Age of the Consciousness Soul: Henriette Dekkers, Ad Dekkers, Dr Phil John Lees
  • Applying the principles of ‘Dekkers and Dekkers overnight examination of casework’ to participants’ cases with an emphasis on multidisciplinary practice, especially therapeutic eurythmy and anthroposophic medicine.
  • The therapeuticum and training environment as a modern mystery centre, working with the epistemology of practice principles.


This is a post-qualifying course, so applicants must have:

  • An international Medical Section Certificate in Anthroposophic Psychotherapy or
  • An international Medical Section Certificate in Anthroposophic Medicine or
  • If an anthroposophic psychotherapy trainee, evidence that you will have completed three years of training in the current anthroposophic psychotherapy course in the UK by February 2022 or
  • If an anthroposophic doctor trainee, evidence that you will have completed the current anthroposophic doctor course in the UK by February 2022


Graduates registered as psychotherapists or doctors and who complete this course in addition to completing a previous training in anthroposophic psychotherapy or anthroposophic medicine will obtain a School of Spiritual Science Medical Section Advanced Diploma in Anthroposophic Psychotherapy. Other graduates will obtain a Medical Section certificate of attendance for continuous professional developmental purposes.


Henriette Dekkers, Ad Dekkers, DrMed Gunver Kienle, DrPhil John Lees, Professor John Nuttall and Dr Romulo de Mello Silva MD

    More Course Info, also see Anthroposophic Psychotherapy.


    ANTHROPOSOPHIC MEDICINE UK is an online platform for Anthroposophic Health and Social Care Professionals in the UK. It is a project of the Anthroposophic Medical Association and is supported by the Anthroposophic Medical Association, the Association of Anthroposophic Therapeutic Arts, the Rhythmical Massage Therapy Association & UK Association for Anthroposophic Counselling and Psychotherapy.

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