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Quality & competence levels for NLP Practitioner providers
A detailed differentiation
by Peter Schütz

In the general public the image of NLP is mainly defined through the majority of ** and *** star providers. Legally speaking teaching is free in most countries. For the NLP courses there are no legally relevant recognized quality checks or disciplinary councils, as it is normal for most qualified professions working with and having responsibility for people eg. psychotherapists, dentists, opticians, architects, surgeons, flying schools, laywers, butchers, clinical, forensic and other regulated psychologists etc.

So that lack of formal checks, qualifications and quality oversight in NLP and pushy marketing drives of minimally qualified persons regretably has led to many forms of abuse. *

On the other side professional NLP/NLPt, if trained and used correctly, is an highly efficient concept for applied psychology and psychotherapy, professionally based on well researched psychological findings.

The following differentiations are based on:

Worldwide we can find 5 Levels of NLP practitioner courses with subsequent higher level trainings:

Level 5 ***** NLPt/NLP Psychotherapy

Level 4 **** Professional NLP (Practitioner courses): 30 - 37 days, externally accredited programms, max. 25 participants, highly accredited trainer teams, independent quality certifications

Level 3 *** Low level NLP: simple 10 - 18 day surface courses for the big mass

Level 2 ** Sectlike NLP games: 5 - 10 days in large groups, the moneymaker and rippoff fiestas

Level 1 * Online NLP courses: well .. buy your diplomas :-(

Professional NLP combines models for managing the inner and the outer world. This "self management and methodology mix" is equivalent to fitness and techniques in many sports. Professional NLP is both cognitive/systemic/linguistic and psychodynamic/integrative/imaginative.

Professional NLP curricula and design were started in Vienna 1986 at the OeTZ-NLP&NLPt. Today there are professional centers in Zagreb and Bucarest, Poland who are on the same high level, with several more coming soon.

An upgrade program to NLP Psychotherapy is possibile along the EANLPt and NLPt-curricula.


* Google “the Bandler method” and you will better understand the position mentioned above and the valid criticism towards many NLP providers regarding missing ethics and competence. Speed seduction and pick up artist NLP based courses are not helpful either for a public appreciation of NLP.