Originally designed by Dr Marsha Linehan (1993) for people diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, the use of Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) has been expanded to a range of clinical populations including those with substance abuse difficulties, individuals experiencing depression with comorbid personality disorders, and offenders. There is growing evidence for the use of DBT with individual with cognitive impairment (e.g., Intellectual Disability, acquired brain injury, severe mental illness, Autistic Spectrum Disorder, Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder). DBT largely utilises a behavioural approach to treatment which makes it more appealing and potentially effective given the proven effectiveness of behavioural interventions for this population. Addressing psychological distress with the assistance of DBT based skills is thought to better equip individuals in managing their psychological distress and make relevant behavioural shifts. DBT can also be considered a strengths-based model and is consistent with psychoeducational and habilitative practice. 

Learning Objectives

At the end of this the training participants will be able to develop:

  • Knowledge and skills on the use of DBT reconceptualization and skills in working with cognitively impaired individuals with challenging/offending behaviours.
  • Learn skills and techniques in the use of DBT coping skills with individuals with challenging/offending behaviours.
  • Introduce the adapted DBT coping skills group program which can be utilized as part of individual and/or group-based treatment.
  • Learn how to incorporate DBT reconceptualization and skills in the development of the client’s risk and behaviour management plans. 

Who should attend?

This two-day online training workshop is suitable for mental health professionals (e.g., counsellors, psychologists, social worker, occupational therapists, psychiatrists, nurses, etc.) who work with complex clients (adults and adolescents) with cognitive impairment who exhibit challenging/offending behaviours (e.g., aggressive/violent behaviours, problematic sexual behaviours, criminal behaviours, etc.). 

The two-day training workshop costs $550.00 (not GST registered). There are limited slots available please email jaspsychology@icloud.com if you have any queries or to register. This online training workshop is scheduled on the 17 and 18 June 2021. 


Dr Joseph Allan Sakdalan

BSc, MA, MPH, MD, MScForPsych, PhD CPsych


Dr Yvonne Maxwell

BAppSc (Psych), GradDipPsych, GCDVioFamPrac Forensic PsychD