Schema Therapy Institute of South Africa

The Institute (STISA) disseminates schema therapy in South Africa and internationally, offering professional training to psychologists and other mental health professionals that can lead to certification with the International Society of Schema Therapy (ISST).

Click here for information about workshops and supervision.

David Edwards

STISA is directed by David Edwards who is certified as a schema therapist and trainer in both individual & couples’ therapy by the International Society of Schema Therapy (ISST). He was President of the ISST from 2017 to 2020. In 2009, he retired from his post as Professor of Psychology at Rhodes University where he was involved in the professional training of clinical and counselling psychologists from 1980.  As a Professor Emeritus, he is still actively involved in research and academic writing.

Help for psychological problems

Psychotherapy can help people with a range of problems including depression, anxiety, panic, eating disorders, trauma flashbacks, mood swings, erratic shifts in emotional state, problems with self-control (eg in expressing anger, use of drugs and alcohol) and relationship dissatisfaction.

Go to our Help for Psychological problems pages to read about how psychotherapists work, and different approaches to psychotherapy.

See our Can medication help me?  feature for a review of the pros and cons of using psychiatric medications.

Schema Therapy

Schema therapy integrates methods and perspectives from several psychotherapy traditions, including cognitive-behaviour therapy, experiential / emotion focused therapies, and psychodynamic and relational approaches. Schema therapy can address longstanding and difficult psychological problems and recent research has demonstrated its effectiveness in problems associated with a number of personality disorders  …


The International Society of Schema Therapy is an international body that oversees training in schema therapy. The ISST accredits schema therapy training centres and also offers accreditation as schema therapists to practitioners licenced to practice in their home countries. There are specialist accreditations in group schema therapy, child and adolescent schema therapy and schema therapy for couples.

Clinical Psychology Services

David Edwards is a Clinical Psychologist in Private Practice and offers psychotherapy for the treatment of most psychological problems including anxiety, depression, eating disorders, addictions, relationship conflicts etc. He uses the schema therapy model where appropriate but also offers shorter term treatment where this is indicated. He offers individual therapy as well as couples therapy. He was the first certified schema therapist to actively practice in South Africa and  he has a network of  therapists familiar with the schema therapy approach.

Professional Training

STISA provides training in schema therapy to professionals (and particularly clinical and counselling psychologists) in the form of workshops and supervision. This training provides practitioners with the experience of the distinctive features of schema therapy.  It also provides the opportunity, for those who wish it, to become certified by the ISST as a schema therapist. Professionals such as creative arts therapists or Registered Counsellors who practice within a hospital or other clinical setting where schema therapy is applicable, may also benefit.