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About Us

Educating counsellors, social workers and therapists in Emotionally Focused Therapy throughout Australia.

Our mission

To provide postgraduate higher education courses in the field of Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) as a higher education provider registered with the Tertiary Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA), and to promote the development of quality and ethical counselling and therapy practice with an EFT focus. In addition, we provide ongoing professional development in EFT for practitioners.


Message from the CEO, IEFT


Our higher education postgraduate courses aim to develop qualified EFT practitioners. Our courses and subjects are designed to teach therapeutic processes that are user-friendly, respectful of clients and enabling of emotional growth and healing through awareness, experiencing and expressing emotional experience. We emphasise the therapeutic relationship as the crucible for holding and caring for clients.

Our postgraduate students find that Emotionally Focused counselling and therapy fits well with their practice and professional identity because it allows so many options and opportunities to work with emotional experience. Students spend time reflecting and exploring the protocols for practical application.

Our postgraduate students continually develop their self-awareness as practitioners as they learn Emotionally Focused counselling and psychotherapy.

I look forward to welcoming you into our academic courses and our EFT community.

Dr Andrew McAuley 



The Institute for Emotionally Focused Therapy (IEFT)

Established in 1999, IEFT’s primary focus is to educate health and allied health practitioners in the counselling and therapy skills used in the Emotionally Focused Therapy approach. The Institute is a registered higher education provider within the Foundation Education Group, offering accredited postgraduate education in the important area of Emotionally Focused work. IEFT is also an accredited international institute with the International Society for Emotion Focused Therapy (ISEFT).

As part of the Foundation Education Group, IEFT is focused on supporting student outcomes and engaging alumni in lifelong learning and continual development of skills. A core philosophy of the Group is to provide students and alumni with educational pathways with relevance across disciplines and employment sectors. The principle of educational pathways is at the centre of IEFT’s engagement with students. While Emotionally Focused Therapy and counselling are highly specialised areas, the discipline may provide additional pathways and linkages to other relevant postgraduate programs for our graduates.

Students at IEFT will experience:

  • Educational programs that develop skills and attributes valued by prospective employers and organisations
  • An academic governance and quality assurance framework that ensures academic standards and continuous improvement in teaching and learning
  • Innovative teaching and learning strategies
  • A commitment to scholarly activity and intellectual enquiry
  • Accredited courses and professional development programs delivered in an effective manner by appropriately trained staff with a high level of qualifications and demonstrated expertise
  • Student support services and interventions to support academic success
  • High standards of ethical practice
  • Strong graduate outcomes


The Foundation Education Group

Foundation Education Holdings is the parent company of IEFT. The aim of the Foundation Education Group as a whole is to provide, promote and undertake education, scholarship and associated student services. Foundation Education Holdings is the sole shareholder of IEFT. The primary purpose of the Foundation Education Group is to provide access and options for lifelong learning for all students and alumni.

Foundation Education Holdings is also the parent company of two growing Registered Training Organisations (RTOs): Foundation Education and the Australian Institute of Personal Trainers (AIPT).

Early in 2011, the Foundation Education Group established a number of articulation pathways with leading universities across Australia. These partnerships were established in recognition that a number of graduates were using vocational qualifications as their first step on a pathway to higher education. The strategic vision emerged to maintain and grow pathways via a number of external partners and to establish a higher education provider within the Group to offer a direct pathway into tertiary qualifications.


IEFT course information

In 2017 and 2018, IEFT offers two accredited higher education qualifications:

Emotionally Focused work has a wide range of applications, from individuals to couples, and short-term to long-term work. Emotionally Focused work is broadly defined as a process-experiential modality and has its origins in the client-centered, Gestalt and Experiential Therapies. In addition, it also has links with developmental approaches and the traditions of psychotherapy.