James Tobin

Assistant professor

Areas of Focus: Psychoanalytic Theory and Technique


Dr. Tobin is an Assistant Professor and Clinical Psychology faculty member at the American School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University | Southern California (ASPP, Southern California) where he teaches courses in psychoanalytic theory and technique, adult psychopathology, couple/family therapy, and group therapy. He also supervises doctoral candidates at the Argosy University Therapeutic Assessment and Psychotherapy Service (AUTAPS). Dr. Tobin is a contributing editor to the Argosy journal, The Practitioner Scholar: Journal of Counseling and Professional Psychology, and serves on the editorial review board for Division 2 (Society for the Teaching of Psychology) of the American Psychological Association (APA).

Dr. Tobin’s recent scholarship interests have focused on illuminating numerous issues involved in the teaching, training, supervising, and mentoring of clinical psychology graduate students. His work has included recommendations for the refinement of the critical thinking construct in clinical psychology training. He is also interested in the factors which promote and hinder a positive supervisory experience, especially those that are relevant for students early in their training. Dr. Tobin’s interests in teaching and training led him to the development of a new initiative, The Argosy University Institute for the Study of Psychotherapy Training and Supervision (“The Research Institute”).

Dr. Tobin maintains a private practice in Newport Beach and Laguna Hills, CA in which he specializes in psychotherapy for adolescents, adults and couples. His areas of clinical interest include dating concerns and romantic relationships, men’s issues, adolescent development, parent-child conflict and family systems dynamics, sexual compulsivity, and Buddhist psychology. Dr. Tobin is a former advanced candidate in psychoanalysis at the Psychoanalytic Institute of New England, East (PINE) and former staff psychologist in the Department of Psychiatry at the Massachusetts General Hospital and Clinical Instructor, Harvard Medical School. He received an A.B. magna cum laude in Psychology and Social Relations from Harvard University, and a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.


  • Psychoanalytic Theory and Technique.
  • Training and Supervision.
  • Systemic (i.e., Group/Couples/Families) Processes.
  • Sexual Compulsivity.
  • Narcissisistic-Codepenent Bonds and Love Addiction.


  • Orange County Psychological Association.
  • Western Psychological Association.
  • The American Psychological Association: Division 2 (The Society for the Teaching of Psychology) and Division 39 (Psychoanalysis).
  • Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards: Certificate of Professional Qualification in Psychology.

Selected Lectures

  • Tobin, J. (2014, March). Finding the subversive in the persona of the therapist. Paper presented at the meeting of the Orange County Psychological Association/Argosy University Faculty Lecture Series, Orange, CA.
  • Tobin, J. (2013, November and 2014, February). The DSM-5: Overview of main themes and diagnostic revisions. In G. Bruss (Chair), DSM-5. Symposium conducted at the meeting of the Orange County Psychological Association and Argosy University, Orange, CA.
  • Tobin, J. (2013, October). Parenting adolescents in the 21st century. Workshop presented at Fusion Academy Community Education Night, Fusion Academy, Mission Viejo, CA.
  • Tobin, J. (2012, November). A therapy hour: Revisiting Winnicott’s notion of “object usage.” Paper presented at the meeting of the Orange County Psychological Association/Argosy University Faculty Lecture Series, Orange, CA.

Selected Presentations

  • Tobin, J. (2013, April). Uncertainty, being uncertain, and refusing uncertainty: Can therapists’ ambition in the era of evidenced-based practice be counterproductive? Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Western Psychological Association, Reno, NV.
  • Tobin, J. (2013, April). True- and false-self manifestations in the application process for internship and postdoctoral training in clinical psychology. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Western Psychological Association, Reno, NV.
  • Tobin, J., Vorwerk, M., & Meier, A. (2013, May). The association of group climate and working alliance in group psychotherapy of adult male sexual offenders. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the California Coalition on Sexual Offending (CCOSO), San Ramon, CA.
  • Tobin, J. (2013, January). Socializing the psychotherapist-in-training to an alternative form of relatedness: The transition from “being nice” to “being therapeutic” in clinical supervision. Poster presented at the annual winter meeting of the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology, Nassau, Bahamas.
  • Tobin, J. (August, 2012). The shift from “ordinary” to “extraordinary” experience in psychodynamic supervision and treatment. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Division 39 (Psychoanalysis), Orlando, FL.

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