David Houghton (T: 0282 766 3289, E:
is your Branch Secretary. 

Structure of BSCAH (Ireland) Hypnosis Training Programme


Training comprises the completion of three modules, two providing a foundation in the adjunctive uses of hypnosis and a specialist module.

The two foundation modules offer a training which is applicable across professions. The specialist module focuses upon the uses of hypnosis within one of the professions in the Society. Therefore, being specific to a given profession, the details of module 3 will vary, according to the needs that profession. The details of a module three which was provided for psychologists is given, to illustrate the format of a specialised module.

Participants will receive a compact disc which, among other information, will include material from the workshop, reference lists, examples of scripts and useful World Wide Web sites. Workshop manuals will provide example scripts for the application of specific techniques.

The Branch will normally post the focus and content of a module 3 on the BSCAH website or circulate it by electronic mail to members of the profession for whom it is intended.

Entry requirement: a professional qualification recognised by the Society. ENQUIRIES: to Mr David Houghton at


David Houghton is a Chartered Educational Psychologist, a member of the Division of Educational and Child Psychology of the British Psychological Society, registered with the Health Professions Council. A graduate in Psychology (University of Liverpool) and in Social Studies (University of Durham), his postgraduate, professional training in educational psychology was at the University of Manchester. He was director of a child guidance centre and school psychological service before moving to Northern Ireland to teach child psychology at the New University of Ulster, later to become simply the University of Ulster. During that time, he had a weekly clinic at the Child Guidance Centre in Londonderry. There and in private work, he developed much of the content he will include in his workshop.

Having trained in hypnosis with the British Society of Experimental and Clinical Hypnosis nearly thirty years ago, he developed an interest in health psychology and introduced it to a psychology undergraduate curriculum. He has published on the subject of child and educational psychology in journals and books. He is presently writing a book on autogenic training and therapy, having trained with the late Wolfgang Luthe, an international authority who developed it with its founder, Johannes Schultz.


Deborah Mairs-Houghton is a Chartered Clinical Psychologist, a member of the Division of Clinical Psychology of the British Psychological Society. A Consultant Clinical Psychologist in adult mental health, she graduated in psychology from the New University of Ulster, and also holds a Master’s degree in the Psychology of Education from the same university. She has a Master of Education degree from the University of Ulster, as the New University later became. She completed her professional training, a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, at The Queen’s University of Belfast. She holds advanced, postgraduate diplomas in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (Queen’s University, Belfast) and in the Management of Psychological Trauma (Nottingham Trent University).

She trained with the British Society of Experimental and Clinical Hypnosis during the early ‘80s and uses hypnosis in her clinical practice, adjunctively to psychological treatments. She has published chapters in books on the use of hypnosis in the management of psychological dysfunction. She trained in Autogenic Therapy with Wolfgang Luthe and has coached athletes and archers in autogenic training. She is presently writing a chapter on the subject of anxiety for a recently published book on hypnosis.


Both tutors provide training workshops in hypnosis to the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology programme at The Queen’s University of Belfast.

Foundation Training

To provide a knowledge base and professional competence in the therapeutic uses of hypnosis

Completion of Level 1 training (Modules 1 & 2) should enable trainees to:

  • understand the different definitions of hypnosis and the value of recent and current researches exploring it
  • make informed judgements about the content of printed articles and books on the subject of hypnosis
  • be aware of the scope of the therapeutic applications of hypnosis within her or his professional competence and of appropriate safeguards and limitations
  • practise basic skills in inducing hypnosis
  • utilise a range of hypnosis scripts suited to patients’ psychological needs (including anxiety, stress, phobia, pain and habit disorders)
  • learn self-hypnosis for personal and for patient use
  • be familiar with methods of assessing hypnosis skills
  • develop skills in the use of metaphor & imagery, ideo-motor signalling and other methods • know some basic hypnosis techniques and scripts for use with children, which acknowledge their developmental cognitive differences and psychological needs.

Download further information here about the Syllabus and Module Sample Training for the Ireland Branch.