- DBT Essentials -

25 modules


Dr William Davies



DBT is a powerful therapeutic approach originally developed by Marsha Linehan for the treatment of borderline personality disorder and now applied across a range of challenging conditions. It relies on teaching core life skills such as mindfulness, how to regulate your emotions, how to tolerate distress, and how to be effective interpersonally, and then helping patients maintain their motivation and resolve ongoing problems as they apply these skills in a planned way. All against the background of having regular consultation meetings with your colleagues to maintain quality stands and resolve problems.

The APT has mastered the delivery of DBT training 'online anytime'; providing top class training you can access right now or any time that suits you. No longer do you have to wait for 'the start date' of the course.

"I learned so much in the course. Though I had some previous knowledge of DBT, it truly clarified so much of the skills and theory of DBT"

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) training from the Association for Psychological Therapies (APT), includes APT accreditation, certification, and resources. And the APT has perfected the art of delivering it in a way that makes it appear simple and easy to apply.

"Very helpful, insightful, organised and easy to follow. Will definitely be using this knowledge and these resources with my clients. Highly recommend!"

With a wealth of clinical experience, Dr William Davies presents the course with relevant stories and examples of using DBT and an engaging lightness which perfectly complements the power of the subject.


"I enjoyed the presenter and overall format of the class. It was easy to follow and gave good examples of practising the components of DBT."

This course gives you a thorough introduction to DBT, it is APT-accredited, and gives you access to important resources for you to use post-course. Whether you simply want to broaden your knowledge or take your first step to establishing a full DBT service this course is for you. The course can be studied by teams or individuals and can also be completed as part of APT's Extended Training in DBT course and The APT Diploma in Psychological Therapies.

For further information on the format of APT online training, the APT’s guarantee to you, and how to make a group booking, click here.



To access the course straightaway, click ‘add to cart’ to purchase by card or PayPal. (If you are ordering the course for somebody else, or a group, create an account and select ‘Bulk Purchase’ once you have proceeded to cart.)

If you would like to be invoiced please click here (once the invoice has been paid or upon receipt of an official Purchase Order, we can then grant access to the course).


The DBT Essentials course covers a great deal:


The 4 'modes' (key components) of DBT.

  • Skills development groups, where patients learn important life skills.
  • 1:1 sessions where patients meet with their individual therapist to problem solve, maintain motivation, and more.
  • Telephone support, where therapist and patient have telephone communication to help them apply the new skills they learn even in crisis situations.
  • Consultation Meetings. Where all the professionals involved in providing DBT get together to discuss any current issues, to support each other and ensure quality control.
  • What to do if you are providing DBT single handed and cannot provide all the components as listed above.


Linehan's Biosocial model.

  • What it is.
  • Why it is important.
  • How we operationalise it in therapy.

Higher order skills of DBT.

  • How to order competing priorities: deciding which of several problems to tackle first.
  • Life-threatening behaviours, therapy-threatening behaviours, and behaviours that interfere with the quality of life.
  • The patient-therapist agreement - our role in it.
  • Assumptions we can make about the patient - and those we can't.



  • Definition of validation, and why it is important.
  • How validation links to Linehan's Biosocial model.
  • The implication of invalidating environments for a child, and later for the adult.
  • Different ways of validating.


  • How metaphors work and why we should use them.
  • 6 Examples of metaphors.
  • 4 Metaphors you can use repeatedly, for common problem situations.
  • General principles of metaphors, including visual metaphors.

Relentless problem solving.

  • Problem solving attitude and problem solving strategy, the usefulness of both.
  • The five stage problem solving strategy.
  • Forms for clients (and you) to use with problem solving.
  • Problem solving exercise.

Contingency management.

  • Differential reinforcement in a clinical setting.
  • The nature of contingency management and how it interacts with the conscious or unconscious motivations of the client.
  • Behavioural analysis, especially as a response to severe behaviour such as parasuicidal behaviour.
  • Chain analysis and solution analysis.



  • The skills necessary to effectively regulate your emotions.
  • Biological elements such as: sleep, exercise, illnesses, circadian rhythm.
  • Specific multi-point strategies and the acronyms to remember them.

Interpersonal effectiveness.

  • Frequent interpersonal issues, and strategies to respond to them.
  • Avoiding quarrels and maintaining relationships.
  • Appropriate assertiveness and strategies for expressing it.

Core Mindfulness skills.

  • A definition and description of mindfulness and the best purposes it can fulfil.
  • Mindfulness and its role in balancing 'the emotional mind' with 'the reasonable mind' to achieve 'the wise mind'.
  • The skills of mindfulness.

Distress tolerance.

  • 'Distraction behaviours' that may be used to counteract and neutralise distress.
  • 'Beyond distraction': steering the thought processes.
  • 'Radical' distress tolerance: doing nothing. How to do nothing: the fact of this turning out to be an effective approach for many people, and the theory behind it.

Walking the Middle Path

  • What this means, why it is important.
  • An overview of some of the exercises involved.


What the DBT Essentials course will do for you:

  • You will have the feeling of knowing what DBT is all about, understanding it, and how it applies to helping people.
  • Given that this is a post-qualification course so you already have the standard clinical skills, you will know enough about DBT from this course to start applying it in your practice.
  • You will be able to work to develop your own skill in DBT and towards establishing a full DBT service if you wish, working with suitable colleagues.
  • You will be able to create validating environments - environments that make people feel good.
  • You will be able to quickly have people 'see things differently'.
  • You will be able to (help people to) solve problems.
  • You will be able to respond to people who have just done severe behaviours in a way which is caring yet does not reinforce the severe behaviour.
  • You will be able to (help people to) bring some sense of order and predictability to their emotions.
  • You will have the chance to begin practising mindfulness.
  • You will be able to (help others to) tolerate distress much better. Not to allow distress to get into a 'vicious spiral'.
  • You will be able to order competing priorities amongst several 'top priorities'.



Click ‘add to cart’ to purchase by card or PayPal. (If you are ordering for somebody else - or a group - create an account and select ‘Bulk Purchase’ once you have proceeded to cart.)

If you would like to be invoiced please email finance@apt.ac stating; the course title, how many places you require, your organisation's purchase order number, and the name and address for the invoice to be sent to.


By completing/passing this course, you will attain the certificate APT Accreditation, Level 2 (18 hours CPD)

Learning Credits

Welcome and Intro
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What is DBT?
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Assessment and Formulation
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The DBT Assessment Phase
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Where DBT Fits In
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Contingency Management
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Skills Development Groups
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Interpersonal Effectiveness
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A break from Skills Development Groups
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Emotion Regulation
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Distress Tolerance
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Walking the Middle Path
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How to Do it
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Individual Sessions
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Relentless Problem Solving
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Chaining 2
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Putting it into Practice
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The Consultation Meeting
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The Checklist
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What have you earned by completing this course
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Added 2 days ago, by Anonymous
Excellent - thank you!
Added 4 days ago, by Anonymous
I loved the way the slides were described and ad libbed with humour.
Added 8 days ago, by Nasreen
The course is excellent and well delivered. Thank you
Added 9 days ago, by Anonymous
Added 13 days ago, by Anonymous
Very Enjoyable
Added 15 days ago, by Charlotte
very well delivered online course
Added 16 days ago, by Anonymous
Course was good and know more about DBT
Added 16 days ago, by Jackie
I enjoyed the course would of preferred to do this over the three days
Added 16 days ago, by Anonymous
A great overview of the DBT model
Added 17 days ago, by Rosie
great course

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