saata VOL: 1, ISSUE: 1 - Dec 2021 facebook


STA Exam Experience

From no intention to do the TSTA exam, to wanting to be a Supervising Transactional Analyst, and finally going through the rites of passage of preparation and the exam is what I am sharing with you.

Once I decided that I would be an STA, I put the gears in motion.  With so many decades of experience in many modalities, including as a PTSTA and a facilitator and trainer in Family Constellation, I knew that my ideas and my work is integrative of all my learning and experiences.  For me the STA exam was about demonstrating my philosophy, spirituality, my thinking, and who I am as a trainer and supervisor in TA.   And for me to do the STA, TA had to hold and have a place for all me, which it did!  My focus of preparation was to sharpen and integrate my experiences into TA with both a deepening and a meta perspective.   And the creation was pure alchemy!

As I look back, I realise that so often I was guided by serendipity and the words I chanced upon in my early training notes as a PTSTA - “Change occurs when you become who you are and not try to become what you are not”.    Both the time of preparation and the exam was stimulating, challenging, affirming and a fulfilling experience.  

I am grateful to all my teachers on whose shoulders I stand, my supervisors, my colleagues, trainees and supervisees.  Through them all I experienced the gift of giving and receiving.  I also felt my ancestors and my family behind me, supporting me and my work. 

Annie Cariapa (STA)

CTA Exam Process

I recently appeared for the CTA online oral examination. When it was announced that I had passed, I experienced a flood of emotions that included joy, relief and disbelief. That moment, a culmination of months of navigating anxiety and hope, was possible largely due to the generous involvement of supervisors and other colleagues, family and friends in my journey. 

Among the several practices/experiences that contributed to my engagement in the process, I share a few below: 

  • Reading books and articles and presenting them to peers, encouraged from early in my training by my primary supervisor, Dr. Susan George, gave me a wide view of several aspects of TA, including recent developments, different approaches, learnings from practitioners in the same field as well as the others etc. 
  • Attending the series of exam writing workshops offered by SAATA provided a much-needed confidence to discover my own process towards the exams. I took up the Advanced Diploma exam, and my experience with the feedback from the written and oral exam motivated me to invest further in the process. 
  • Consistent supervision, and closer to the exam, several sessions of supervision with some PTSTAs were immensely helpful. 
  • Mock exams, if possible, are invaluable. I found the mock exam that ITAA offered to test the online format an immense opportunity to acquaint myself with the exam process. 

I hope the brief suggestions and descriptions above might encourage aspiring candidates to seek out their own journeys, and I wish them much satisfaction and discovery in the process. 

Sarmishta Mani is a certified transactional analyst and a psychoanalytic psychotherapist.


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