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The American Group Psychotherapy Association (AGPA) is a not-for-profit multi-disciplinary organization dedicated to enhancing the practice, theory and research of Group Psychotherapy.


American Group Psychotherapy Association a national organization with over 2000 members(national and international) and 31 Affiliate Societies. Members come from varied and diverse disciplines such as: Psychology, Creative Arts Therapists, Psychiatry, Nursing, Social Work, Professional Counselors, Addictions Counselors, and Marriage and Family Therapists to name a few. Each year AGPA's annual meeting attracts approximately 1000 attendees. The site of each year's annual meeting rotates in order to offer accessibility and exposure to the diverse and rich membership of the association.

AGPA's Mission

  • To promote quality group psychotherapy care as a primary method of treatment that is clinically sound, cost-effective, and accessible.
  • To advance group psychotherapy training and research.
  • To provide a network of peer support and educational opportunities that serves the professional needs of group practitioners & individual practitioners.
  • To advocate for quality care on behalf of its members, clients/patients and the public.
  • To actively respond to matters of social issues and social policy.


The inception of the American Group Psychotherapy Association began in 1942 with the actual decision to found the organization being made in February 1943 during a meeting of the American Orthopsychiatric Association in New York City. The organization was first named the American Group Therapy Association. In 1952, the name was officially changed to the American Group Psychotherapy Association. Since its inception AGPA has remained true to its tenets to promote the practice, theory and research of group. The inclusionary nature of this organization continues to attract members from varying disciplines. Samuel R. Slavson was one of the founders and served as the first president of the AGPA.


The National Registry of Certified Group Psychotherapists (NRCGP)is a not-for-profit corporation formed to function autonomously from AGPA. The NRCGP awards group therapists certification after they have presented documentation demonstrating the completion of a significant amount of training through coursework, experience, and supervision. A Certified Group Psychotherapist(CGP) is also required to continue life-long learning by obtaining continuing education credits (CEU's).

Organizational Involvement

The diversity of AGPA membership has been actively involved in the promotion of group therapy as an alternative treatment to the public and private sectors. The development of ethical and practice standards. AGPA membership has also responded to the Nations' disasters; for example September 11 and Hurricane Katrina. AGPA has also developed a CORE battery for use by practitioners. This battery assists the clinician in the development of an evidence-based practice.



Scheidlinger, S., Schamess, G (1992)Fifty Years of AGPA 1942-1992: An Overview. MacKenzie,R. (Ed). Classics in Group Psychotherapy. New York: Guilford Press.

Trauma Treatment Initiatives: American Group Psychotherapy Association New York Times

External links

Professional Organizations

Association for Specialists in Group Work (ASGW)a division of ACA

consumer information

affiliate society links

de:American Group Psychotherapy Association

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