Mar 102009

A comment from one of our regular visitors got me thinking.

I wrote a piece about smoking cessation and Elle remarked that she intended to visit a local hypnotherapist because he seemed to be properly qualified.

Hmm, I thought. What exactly does properly qualified mean?

Well, the first place to start might be a quick Google search, so that’s what I did. I Googled his name, and came up with a website called, of all things, Ready Steady Stop — Stop Smoking in 1 Hour.

You don’t believe me?

Here it is.

See that?

One hour and you’ve stopped smoking.

Here’s what the site says:

With the official smoking ban now in place, Ready Steady Stop, a group of therapists specialising in hypnotherapy and neuro linguistic programming have a message for those who want to quit the weed: Give us an hour and we’ll give you your life back.

And this group of therapists confirm that fear is the overriding factor preventing smokers from resisting the ban and quitting: fear of cravings; fear of putting on weight; fear of the trauma of quitting and fear of not being able to enjoy life without smoking.

Ready Steady Stop comprises three London-trained therapists based in Donegal, Wicklow and Limerick who use the best of traditional hypnotherapy techniques combined with the new science of NeuroLinguistic Programming (NLP) a technique which has successfully treated over hundreds of smokers since its introduction a couple of years ago. The treatment offers a 95% success rate with a free backup session for the other 5%.

Give us an hour and we’ll give you your life back. And look carefully. These are no ordinary therapists, but London-trained ones. London-trained therapists, who have treated over hundreds of smokers. I don’t know what the relevance of training in London is. Do you?

Here’s their picture from the website:

The man standing at the back is James Jameson. Here’s his website. You’ll notice that James claims no qualifications recognised by the Higher Education and Training Awards Council (HETAC) or any Irish professional body recognised in law.

He claims to hold an Advanced Diploma in Hypnotherapy, to be a member of the Association of Registered Complementary Health Therapists of Ireland and to be a Master Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP).

Let’s go through the list. James doesn’t tell us where he acquired his Advanced Diploma in Hypnotherapy, but not to worry. As we”ll find out shortly, should you desire to have an Advanced Diploma in Hypnotherapy, you too can be as qualified as James, and it will take you no more than a few weekends. American distance-learning institutions are very accommodating in providing this sort of intensive training.

I don’t know what the Association of Registered Complementary Health Therapists of Ireland is, but I do know that a complementary therapist is, by definition, somebody who does not practise medicine but tries to make you better some other way. In other words, not a doctor, or a psychiatrist or a psychologist holding registration with any officially-recognised Irish professional body.

So who are they registered with?

Private organisations without official accreditation. That’s who. Private companies.

James also claims to be a Master Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, so let’s be clear about something. Neuro-Linguistic Programming is bullshit. When you read further down his web page, you’ll see that this is something that can be acquired over a few weekends from a dubious American diploma-mill.

Did you ever notice how fond these complementary practitioners are of scientific-sounding words? Jameson claims to practise something he calls Energy Psychology, which is an utterly meaningless term but which might, I imagine, impress a vulnerable person. After all, words like Energy and Psychology are among the most abused in the entire English language. I’d wager that not one person you challenge would be able to give you a defensible definition of the word energy, and that includes James Jameson. Why? Because energy is not a concept that can be defined outside the realm of physics. When used in other contexts, it has as much precision as the notion of niceness, or attractiveness. How sexy are you? We’ll measure it with this stupid machine.

These people love bullshit.

Listen to this:

In addition to his hypnotherapy qualifications James is also qualified to practice and teach the incredible, newly emerging Energy Psychology approaches.

Incredible? Absolutely. It isn’t credible.

Newly emerging? Certainly: he just made it up.

Energy psychology? An utterly meaningless term.

So James is qualified to teach bullshit? Good for him. I’d have expected no less.

Pseudo-science. Pseudo-technology. Pseudo-therapy.


Now, what about the woman sitting down? Well, that would be Mary Mitchell. Mary claims to be trained as a hypnotherapist with the Institute of Clinical Hypnotherapy and Psychotherapy. She doesn’t claim to have any qualifications — just training — but she does claim to be certified by something called the American Board of Hypnotherapy, and I’ll tell you more about that shortly, when we move on to the final member of the group. A search in the US Department of Education database of accredited institutions does not reveal an institution of this name. A search of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation database likewise does not return a result.

HETAC does not accredit the Institute of Clinical Hypnotherapy and Psychotherapy and I suspect it has little formal standing in this country. Unfortunately, the link to Mary’s website is no longer functioning, and so we’re a little hampered in discovering more about her qualifications, but let’s not be too downhearted. We can still look at the Institute of Clinical Hypnotherapy after all, and maybe we can deduce some things.

A glance at the ICHP website shows the various levels of courses offered.

Level 1 takes place over five weekends and costs €500.

Level 2 costs €1000 and takes place over six weekends.

Level 3 takes five weekends but no price is given.

So there you have it. Thirty-two days and you’re a highly qualified therapist, able to charge as much as a doctor who may have studied for six or seven years and spent another seven in internships and registrar jobs. Thirty-two days. Not bad, is it?

Good girl, Mary. I’m beginning to realise I made a huge mistake in studying for years when I could have studied for weeks and made a lot more money.

Finally, we have the individual on the right. Derry O Malley.

Now, Derry O Malley, according to the website, trained for two years with the Irish Institute of Counselling and Hypnotherapy (IICH), and he’s also a member of that organisation. Unfortunately, I have been unable to find any registration for this institution and no organisation of this name is accredited by any official body that I have been able to discover.

The website of IICH Training states that it’s the accredited training division of the Irish Institute of Counselling and Hypnotherapy, but when I wrote to them, they told me that the word accredited shouldn’t have been on the website. It should have said approved instead. I have asked them who issues the approval, and if they tell me, I’ll let you know. I notice that their web site has been down for the last week or so, possibly as a result of my query, but luckily, you can still visit their pages here.

This is how they explain neuro-linguistic programming:


What is it?
NLP is short for Neuro Linguistic Programming.


NLP has studied how the mind works, with verifiable and sometimes astonishing results.

Neuro: Nervous system through which experience is received then processed through the five senses.

Linguistic: Language and non-verbal communication systems through which neural representations are coded, ordered and given meaning.

Programming: the ability to organize our communication and neurological systems to achieve specific, desired goals and results.


If you look carefully at this statement, you will see that it means absolutely nothing while at the same time managing to sound impressively scientific. For complete clarity, I need to say at this point that NLP is a pseudo-science with no reputable research to support it and no coherent scientific basis. In other words, it’s waffle, calculated to overwhelm vulnerable people who might be impressed by scientific-sounding terms. Therefore, any organisation claiming to base its therapies on NLP immediately sets alarm bells ringing.

Now, the Irish Institute of Counselling and Hypnotherapy doesn’t appear to have any status other than its own claim to legitimacy. It is not registered as an educational organisation with any Irish accrediting body that I have been able to discover.

In other words, I could set up something called the Irish Institute of Energy Realignment and Wellness Therapy, and I could sell qualifications to you over the internet that would have just as much validity as anything you’d buy from the Irish Institute of Counselling and Hypnotherapy.

Meanwhile, back in Limerick.

According to his website, Derry O Malley is licensed to practise NLP by the Society of Neuro Linguistic Programme (sic). I haven’t been able to find an organisation of that name, or indeed of any similar name, and I’m not aware that a licence issued by it has any officially-recognised status in this country.

The website tells us that he is certified by the American Board of Hypnotherapy, so I had a look at their website. They very helpfully provide a list of trainers around the world, and when I searched for Irish trainers, I was in luck. Success Partners run a course over five weekends and if I sign up for that I can become an NLP practitioner and the American Board of Hypnotherapy will certify me.

How do I achieve this?

The course takes five weekends, or alternatively, I can take the accelerated course, which takes a full week. Seven full days of study.

Either way, I’ll get my cert and I too can say that I’m certified by the American Board of Hypnotherapy

So then I started to wonder, what exactly do these people claim to be?

Are they medical practitioners?

No. What they do isn’t medicine, and they are not doctors.

Maybe they’re counsellors?

Well, the National Counselling Institute of Ireland is the appropriate professional body there.

According to their website, to be accredited as a member of the Institute one must hold a minimum qualification at degree level or higher in a counselling related discipline. Those at degree level must be HETAC accredited (or within the National Framework of Qualifications) or have their counselling degree covered by the BOLOGNA treaty.

Unfortunately, the folks at Ready Steady Stop don’t claim to have degrees in anything, and so on the face of it would not qualify for membership of the NCII.

I’m at a loss to know what independently-awarded qualifications they possess except those asserted by themselves.

Let’s be clear. In the end we all deal with our own problems. Neuro-Linguistic Programming is a nonsense concept, and anyone who parts with money on the strength of it is being extremely foolish.

If you want to quit smoking, and you decide to visit the people associated with Ready Steady Stop, just remember that you’d probably have just as much success quitting if you simply stopped buying and lighting cigarettes.

It’s that easy. Trust me.



12th October 2009

The IICH website seems to be defunct, which is a pity.  It’s closed down.  This website is deceased.  It’s an ex-website.  In fact, it doesn’t seem possible to contact the Irish Instituute for Counselling and Hypnotherapy at all, and this must surely be a great loss to the world at large.

Luckily, the IICH is still listed with the Companies Registration Office, and therefore, at great cost, I bring you the folowing details.

Registered office: 118 Stillorgan Rd, Dublin 4


Sean Collins


Corrig Rd

Dun Laoghaire

Rhoda Draper

118 Stillorgan Road

Dublin 4

Rhoda is also listed as a director of the Association for Thought Field Therapy.  Rhoda Draper B.A., Dip.C.H., TFT Dx is an expert in Thought Field Therapy and a member of the board of the Association for Thought Field Therapy.

I don’t know what a Dip.C.H is.  Do you?

I don’t know what a TFT Dx is, for that matter, but you can buy it here for $125 which seems reasonable enough.

The Thought Field Therapy website is HERE.

The chairman of the board is Founder and developer of the Callahan Techniques® Thought Field Therapy.

Roger J. Callahan, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist. A graduate of the University of Michigan, he received his Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Syracuse University.

Dr. Callahan is author of It Can Happen to You: The Practical Guide to Romantic Love

Thought Field Therapy is based on Callahan’s belief that our thoughts form electromagnetic fields around our bodies which can be manipulated by tapping ourselves at various strategic locations. These fields’ behaviour would not conform with the characteristics of any electromagnetic field known to science.

No reliable research has been published in support of Callahan’s TFT belief system.  No double-blind tests.  No control groups.  No analysis.

Even more strangely, Callahan’s own webite contains the following disclaimer:

The self-help products recommended on this web site are for the purpose of reducing fears, stress and various associated daily problems only. They are not intended as treatment or prescription for any disease, mental or physical, or as a substitute for regular medical or psychological care.

So there you have it.  Thought Field Therapy is not a treatment.

[Oxford English Dictionary:
• noun pl. therapies

1.treatment intended to relieve or heal a disorder.
2. the treatment of mental or psychological disorders by psychological means.]

So it’s a treatment. Let’s decide that.

Rhoda claims no training in physics, chemistry or any of the hard sciences,

Despite this, she employs TFT to treat people at the  Ardagh Clinic with Sean Collins who holds a modular doctorate from the American Institute of Hypnotherapy.

I’ll provide full background on this institute in due course.  It certainly seems rigorous.  According to Sean’s website, the course required studying a wide range of relevant texts and developing a 20-30 page academic paper.

Imagine that.  Having to write all of 30 pages to get a PhD.

Sean’s site also explains that the American institute of Hypnotherapy was subsequently taken over by the American Pacific University, which is not necessarily something I’d be advertising, but then again, I’m a traditionalist, believing that a degree should be awarded following a rigorous course of study.

Call me old-fashioned.

According to their website, Rhoda and Sean believe that their treatment may significantly contribute towards recovery prospects by boosting immune function and giving better quality of life.

Not “will”, you understand.


This means that neither Rhoda nor Sean are making any false claims for their Key-Model treatment, which desperately-worried cancer patients sign up for.  Their blurb explains that the Key Model is based on research at universities around the world and also here in Ireland, though it doesn’t provide details of this research or of its outcomes.


See also:

Cat registered as hypnotherapist

  42 Responses to “Neuro Linguistic Programming and Smoking Cessation”

Comments (42)

    Success Partners, not only can you become an NLP, they seem to have the time space continuum sorted as well, from their website
    Training Courses Last Updated : 02 July 2009


    Quote: “Private organisations without governmental approval.”

    Now, is governmental approval – with the government we have – any indication of qualification?
    I don’t think so.

    Sometimes off-governmental-approval- organisations are better, sometimes they are just as crap as the govern-mental approved ones.

    But then, this is a free-for-all-world where you can make a fortune by suggesting stuff/thingies/getrichnow/live forever to the needies (governmental, innit?).

    I might consider counselling debt-ridden new-poors by my great invention of TTROY (try the rip-off yourself) …
    It might get governmental approved one way or other, because it’s in line with governmental … ah what the heck!

    Anyway, I’ll have a smoke now. Only my last gorgeous non-smoking lover was able to stop me from gasping for a cigarette.
    Now, there is an idea …


    Regulation is what government is for.

    I use the expression “governmental approval” as a counterpoint to self-qualification, which is no qualification at all.

    What bit of that do you object to?


    Self-qualification is in my experience quite often more fundamental than official qualification.

    But it always depends on the individual.

    I.e. someone who is really into something (whatever it is) would do more research and is more ambitious than someone who just goes through the official motions of anm official degree.

    I do certainly disapprove of some loser who thinks that by adapting some initials and doing some mindless magic has any qualifications and does any good.
    So basically I agree with your opinion about these apparantly strange middle-classe people with nothing else to do than making money.

    But I do disagree with a generalisation about people who have no governmental approval or official degree.

    Now where are my fags …


    Let me check something with you. Do you think people should be able to award their own qualifications to themselves?

    If not, do you think there should be some regulation over those who award qualifications or do you think anyone should be able to do hand out a qualification?

    If you think there ought to be be some regulation, who do you think should do it?


    I certainly think that there should be some regulation, or not just some but really qualified ones.
    But you asked the most important and unanswerable question: Who should do it? Who has the qualification to regulate?

    Well, I don’t know and I don’t know anyone who could. At least not on this topic.

    And that’s why I wouldn’t judge any assumed qualification on governmental approval.

    Regulations in this country (or any country), as you blogged yourself, are not exactly a guaranty for quality.


    Regulation is done by government. That’s what government is.

    By definition.

    (Incidentally, I don’t blog things. I might say them or write them, but I certainly don’t blog them.)


    Ah. I didn’t get the impression that you are that attached to this government and its regulations after all your criticism of such like. Which I quite like, btw.

    And for the blogging – might be the wrong expression, I apoligize. I meant your expressed and quite straightforward opinion in this blog.

    But then English isn’t my first language. Which shouldn’t be an issue – incidentally.


    “astonishing results” is what it’s all about so well done you BOCK for posting this.

    Brilliant as ever.

    The mere mention of ‘astonishing results’ will usually spell it out for people. Unfortunately the smoker is an addict so therefore scams like this are not unusual.


    Well I didn’t go after friends and yourselves pointed out to me that it was too much money, so I’m still smoking but bought an expensive pair of shoes in BT instead with some of the money I didn’t spend. So still an addict (at the mo), but my feet look good!


    Super sleuthing Mr Bock .


    I can appreciate that research on the internet could deduce that NLP is a “rubbish concept” but in fact it is a useful tool in expansion of communication skills, it is most unfortunate that some people out there in the world of supposed “healing” tag onto these skills and promote and use them for all the wrong reasons and completly inappropriatly, because if used for what it is NLP is helpful but only that, absolutly not what the people you mentioned it above for are using it for.
    its a bit akin to “complementary medicine” some of which may not be government monitored or approved, and very dangerous in the wrong hands, but Allopathic medicine which has total monitoring and governing and approval is equally dangeous in the wrong hands.
    thats just my tuppenceworth.


    One of my work colleagues did the oul’ back in and while he was waiting for a referral to a doctor, he went to see a fellah in gort who fixes backs, hips, necks and the like for humans, greyhounds and horses. He wasn’t medically qualified, but he was a master buitcher! Didn’t use NLP or hypnotherapy but he had a divining rod, by all accounts.


    and did i forget to mention that NLP could in no way no how no anything help anyone to stop smoking ? impossible, to suggest that it might is complete charlatanism., so thanks to Bock for exposing such a sham, that research must have been very time consuming, thanks


    fantastic detective work Bock.

    For your next project of this type, I’d be very interested to know your thoughts on ”Landmark Education”. Someone close to me fell prey to this lot and dragged me along once. My ears have only recently stopped bleeding from the shite talk of it all…


    Norma — I said it’s a pseudo-science in the context of therapy. It has no scientific basis.

    I have no comment to make on its use as a persuasion technique for selling used cars or horses. NLP is the very same as the language that slippery salesmen are born with.


    Between this and the mugshot piece on the government you have solved a communication confusion issue that obviously I have had for a long time. I’m in the US. My family is in Ireland.
    When my mother says “but I’ve no qualifications” with regard to a job I usually drone on and on about her experience.
    I have also gotten the history of degrees and courses taken when I asked Irish and UK candidates about their qualifications for a job. I was always asking them about their experience, they thought I was asking them about their education.
    It clears up a lot of confusion.
    Anyway I quit smoking when I found out I was pregnant. I thought I’d go around the bend the first few days. I declare myself a stop smoking guru. Guilt yourself out of smoking by becoming pregnant.


    Bock, you should award yourself a PhD in blogging.

    Great piece of investigation.

    A real public service.


    I was just thinking to me goodself.Does anyone actually know anybody who got off the smokes using this particular/peculiar method? I know a few who paid 3 or 400 for the “treatment” and it did not work.


    bock. whereas i have no knowledge of NLP being used in “sales techniques” of cars horses or other, I was actually Thanking you and agreeing with you……maybe you missed that ?


    To clarify my point of view, may i say Bock that your judgement of NLP as a pseudoscience is reminiscient of very “old school” judgements, I fully applauded your time consuming research on the “smoking cessation” subject and I advised Elle not to go that route.
    I also applauded your exposure of something bordering on Charlatanism, but your research on NLP is superficial and flawed, It does not claim to be scientific, but there is little evidence to deny it is a very useful skill to aquire, it is widely used by Phychiatrists, Phychologists and people involved in health care, it has been proved very successful in assisting people with Autism and Aspergers syndrome.
    It is in general used on a personal level and taught on that basis, any skill a person can aquire to improve their life and their manner of dealing with their day to day difficulties can only be positive.
    My point on this subject was that many non government regulated therapies are positive and helpful but require sensible and through research from the person wishing to avail of same.
    Were you to stand over your many statements regarding our Government, most especially the Health system in this country, which according to your criteria on this subject must be acceptable because it is “government regulated” then that just poses far too many stupid questions.
    With reference to personal well being and development, it is freedom of choice, at all costs avoid those who prey on the vulnerable, but don’t dismiss something positive because you don’t understand it


    Norma — What do you want me to say? Anyone claiming to treat illness needs to be regulated, and that regulation must be done by government, either directly, or through accredited professional bodies. That is the job of government, regardless of how bad our present government has been.

    NLP is not a science, but is constantly presented as such by charlatans and chancers. In fact, the very title Neuro Linguistic Programming is bogus and meaningless outside of a bad science fiction novel.

    As I said already in a previous reply to you, I have no comment to make on its use as a persuasion technique, and I might add that I have no interest in NLP as a method of communicating. That isn’t the context of this post.


    Thre was a great Onion headline once:

    “Alternative practitioner refuses to accept alternative form of payment”

    Sums it all up really.


    Its official, NLP has been identified as a top ten most discredited interventions according to rigorous research

    The Norcross study is very solid

    The research says that it is especially discredited for the purpose of overcoming such habits and substance abuse



    Meanwhile, the next door neighbours have found……..

    It appears that felines are more intuitive than I had previously believed.


    If a cat can pass the test, maybe I might even apply myself.


    I have just noticed that Mr. Sean Collins is listed as “Dr” on the in the section talking abour the mind body spirit festival in Dublin from 24th October 09. He will be in the Dodder Room at the RDS. The website states “1.00-2.00 [Free Workshop] Practical Strategies for Beating Stress with Dr Sean Collins. In this workshop, participants will learn latest methods for tackling stress from the fields of Cognitive Therapy and NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming). Participants will acquire practical strategies for creating a more relaxed, creative and energised life for themselves. Handouts will be provided.”

    I find this very misleading and distrubing because Harry McGee (now political journalist with the Irish Times) and Richard Oakley did an investigative report. about unaccredited degrees. Their report stated that Mr Collins does have a Doctorate in Clinical Hypnotherapy (DCH) which was conferred on him by the American Institute of Hypnotherapy (AIH) in 1990. However, the AIH is an unaccredited USA institution (Sunday Tribune investigative report by Harry McGee, 25 February 2001). Link to Sunday Tribune report is

    In most USA states, it is a criminal offence to use the title “Dr” if the doctorate is received from an unaccredited institution. Mr. Sean Collins uses the title “Dr” in his ‘Key Model’ book and on the his website

    On the Yoga Ireland website, he is listed as “Dr. Sean Collins, Clinical Psychologist”
    Mr Collins does not appear to be a member of any professional counselling or psychological association in Ireland . Mr Collins’s only “accredited” membership was of the Irish Institute of Counselling and Hypnotherapy (IICH) which he founded himself in 1991. However, he has recently changed the name of the IICH to Irish Institute of Cognitive & Humanistic Psychotherapy (IICHP) . The IICHP is not accredited in Ireland.
    On page 220 of his self-published book “The Key Model” Mr Collins states he was “Educated in Scoil Mhuire (CBS), Marino, Belvedere College (SJ) and University College , Dublin , he holds bachelor degrees in both psychology and clinical hypnotherapy and, in 1990, earned his doctorate in Clinical Hypnotherapy.” The way that the above sentence is phrased could imply that he attended UCD and completed 2 degrees and a doctorate there. However, when I contacted UCD (Professor Ciarán Benson, former chair of UCD School of Psychology) they had no record of him completing any of the above courses or passing any examinations.
    It is very unclear to me where he received the B.A in psychology that he claims to have. His website now seems to suggest that it was a “modular” degree in the USA. What does he mean by “modular”?
    I find it shocking and disturbing that there is currently no law in Ireland to prevent a person using the title “Doctor” or “Clinical Psychologist” from an unaccredited institute, especially when the focus of attention of that person are cancer victims, and due to the nature of this condition, many of these are vulnerable people desperately seeking an answer to their predicament.
    May I respectfully request that you inform relevant people of the facts of this matter in order to help protect vulnerable people in Ireland , in particular those who could easily be confused or misled


    Very interesting.

    Feel free to contact me directly here if you wish:


    Mr Collins’s latest website –do you think he looks like a “doctor” in the photo?
    I’ve just noticed that he now uses “Dr” on the following webpage And again on It is also very interesting that he refers to the Irish Cancer Society on the page even though they have removed his book from their website. I think he seems to think that he can now use “Dr” (and why not- there is no law in Ireland to prevent him from doing so) because the American Pacific Unversity (APC) has now just become accredited this year– however this accreditation is for degrees and masters in transpersonal psychology. Please note that APC is not accredited to award doctorates, certainly not a Doctorate in Clinical Hypnotherapy (DCH). Also, I would imagine that accreditation is not retrospective so I assume Mr Collins’s DCH is still not accredited. In most USA states it is a criminal offence to use the title “Dr” if it is received from an unaccredited educational institute.


    What’s the point of assigning your own qualifications? The whole idea of being accredited is to be objectively accredited, not subjectively. By the way, I find it hard to believe that hypnotherapy could have an immediate result on chemical physical addictions. Granted, it may help with the habit part, but not the addiction part. Those are two different things.


    “Dr” Sean Collins psychotherapist (that’s the person who uses the title “Doctor” even though ALL his claimed qualifications are unaccredited) training website is back on-line . On this website it states:

    “Dr Sean Collins, one of Ireland’s pre-eminent practitioners in hypnotherapy and neuro-linguistic programming (NLP), founded the IICH in 1991 to fill the need as he saw it for an organization to establish an ETHICAL blueprint for the profession in Ireland.”

    So what Sean Collins is doing is described as ethical! So it’s ethical to call him a doctor even though ALL his claimed qualifications are unaccredited? In nearly all US States it is a CRIMINAL OFFENCE to use the title “Doctor” if it is received from an unaccredited institute. Please also note that Sean Collins uses “dr” in his email address ( on his OWN website

    This is disgraceful and very disturbing. How can this be stopped? PLEASE can anyone advise on how we can help protect vulnerable people from these types of organisations?


    I would like to sincerely thank Dialogue Ireland for the time and energy they have put into investigating the educational qualifications of Sean Collins, who practices as a psychotherapist in Ireland.

    I just want to make everyone aware that Dialogue Ireland have recently completed an investigation into the educational qualifications of “Dr” Sean Collins. Their investigations have revealed that Sean Collins’s qualfications are unaccredited. In fact, in most USA states, Sean Collins would be commiting a CRIMINAL OFFENCE if he were to use the title “Doctor”.

    In light of this, Dialogue Ireland have posted a clarification statement on their website. Please click on the link below for full details of the statement.


    When claims are too good to be true then they most probably are: Too good to be true !


    I see that Derry O’Malley is now licensed to practise as a Human Givens Therapist – presume that is legit? He still seems to have all his other qualifications.


    I’ve never heard of that qualification. Who was it awarded by?


    Seems to be awarded by the Human Givens Institute in the UK – there is the link on that site to the Irish register of Human Givens therapists


    What is the Human Givens Institute? I can find no record of it in the database of the UK Professional Standards Authority.


    No clear idea myself – I went onto Wikipedia and looked up Human Givens – there is a paragraph copied and pasted from there below. It seems from this to be in the process of being accredited by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care.

    Human Givens Institute[edit]
    The Human Givens Institute is a membership organisation open to those wishing to support and promote the human givens approach through all forms of psychological, educational and social interactions, and the professional body representing the interests of those in the caring and teaching professions who aim to work in alignment with the best scientific knowledge available about the givens of human nature. The institute is in the process of becoming accredited by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care.


    They seem inoffensive enough, with no evidence of pseudoscience that I can see. However, without listing in the UK PSA, it’s hard to see how they can award qualifications. I suppose time will tell.

    Incidentally, they have both Irish and British directors. Originally they were called Radical Psycology TV Limited, which they corrected to Psychology. Then they changed to Human Givens Institute Ltd, but that in itself invites curiosity.

    The word Institute is protected in the UK. According to the UK companies office, the title may only be used by organisations which are carrying out research at the highest level or to professional bodies of the highest standing.

    It may well be that they meet one of these criteria. I don’t know enough about them to express an opinion one way or the other.


    Thanks for the detective work on the directors. Interesting that Derry O’Malley seems to have moved on from the hypnotherapy and smoking cessation. His bio in the mindfully well website states that he is ‘an experienced counsellor and psychotherapist’ with over ’20 years experience in private practice in Limerick, assisting people – whether that’s in facilitating clients to get their lives on track by re-establishing old skills such as healthy sleep patterns or the ability to remain calm.’


    Derry would need to examine the Google listing describing him as a doctor.

    I suspect that might create legal problems if anyone decided to take issue with it.


    Better than being unemployed, which of the trio is Grouco?

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