Frequently asked questions

Click on a question to see the answer.
About DBT
About Dialectical Behaviour Therapy

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), developed by Marsha Linehan, Ph.D., at the University of Washington, is a comprehensive cognitive-behavioural treatment for borderline personality disorder (BPD) and other complex 'multi-diagnostic' problems related to emotion dysregulation.  DBT is especially effective for those with chronic suicidal or other severe, dysfunctional behaviours. Research has shown DBT to be effective in reducing suicidal behaviour, psychiatric hospitalisation, drop out from treatment, substance abuse, anger and interpersonal difficulties. Read more about  DBT  here.

Finding DBT services
We are a New Zealand based DBT training and consultation provider and we are unable to make recommendations about individuals or services offering DBT or other treatments to healthcare users. If you are wanting to access health care services, including DBT, we recommend you contact your GP or your local community mental health service to discuss your needs. They often have knowledge about services in the area that provide DBT programmes or individual practitioners who have experience in this therapy.
Links to DBT resources
See our Links page.
DBTNZ training is not a DBT qualification
Training vs qualifications vs certification?

DBTNZ offers training in DBT. Participants who fully complete the course of training will receive a certificate of attendance to note this. Participants who partially complete training can request a letter annotating their partial attendance.

DBTNZ does not offer a qualification in DBT. To our knowledge there are no recognized tertiary providers in New Zealand who offer DBT qualifications.

Currently the ‘gold standard’ of DBT practice is certification as someone who has been evaluated to be capable of providing the treatment to a high standard. We fully endorse the Linehan Board of Certification (LBC) process as the only certification process we know of that follows independently established principles of certification and reviews actual work samples. See our FAQ on the LBC of more information. DBTNZ training can satisfy some of the essential prerequisites for the LBC certification process.

Is DBTNZ training ‘official’ DBT training?

Training offered directly by DBTNZ has been developed by Dr Linehan and make available to us through our International Affiliate relationship with the Linehan Institute and our partnership with Behavioral Tech, LLC.

At times we may also host training events by other DBTNZ experts who work independently from the Linehan Institute or Behavioural Tech.
The Linehan Board of Certification process

In 2014, the US-based DBT-Linehan Board of Certification (DBT-LBC) program was launched to evaluate individual providers' DBT skills, knowledge, and abilities in order to determine if they are doing DBT from the evidence-based perspective. The DBT-LBC is developed a registry of certified DBT therapists. This will eventually include DBT programs. Clients and their families, mental health professionals, governmental agencies, and insurance companies can use this list to find highly qualified DBT providers.

The DBT-LBC process is the gold standard in establishing DBT competence. While initially a US based initiative, this is becoming the international standard of DBT certification. As of 2017 few (if any) New Zealand providers have completed LBC certification. However we expect this will change in the years ahead. Visit the DBT-LBC website for full information about DBT Certification, including all the information you need to prepare, apply, and track the entire process.
Note there are other certification process available in the world yet we know of no others that have adopted such rigourous certification processes, that review clinician work samples or that have the endorsement of Dr Linehan (the developer of DBT). In our opinion, other certification processes do not offer sufficient assurance of DBT competence.

Registering for DBTNZ training
How to receive emails about DBT training
If you sign up to our wesbite we will occasionally send you emails about our trainings. Click here to sign up. You can opt out of emails if you change your mind.
Who can register for DBTNZ training

Our shorter training events are available to anyone interested in learning the fundamentals of DBT. It is assumed, but not required, that participants are registered mental health professionals.

As comprehensive DBT is a team-based treatment, our advanced events are typically available to members of DBT teams. Such events will clearly specify requirements in their descriptions
How do I register for a training?

First create a DBT account: click here to start. Don't forget to confirm your sign-up by clicking the 'confirm' link in the email you receive from us.

Then log in, fill in your details, go to your chosen training page and click the button near the bottom to start signing up. You will receive PDF invoices automatically to your email.

We ask you to set up an account as some of our training requires meeting prerequisite criteria and this needs to be personalized to the applicant. It also forms a record of your prior DBTNZ training.

Can I reserve a place?

Some of our training will have an option to 'reserve a place' so you can hold a seat while you confirm your funding or availability. This is managed on-line and will be clearly shown when available. The reservation is only available until a certain number of days before the training starts, typically 6 weeks or 2 months. If you have not completed your registration by then, the reservation will expire.

Waitlists for training that is fully subscribed

If a training is fully subscribed there may be an option to join a wait list. If this option is avaible it will be marked on the training page.

To join the waitlist you must sign up for our webiste and proceed with your registration. When the registration is submitted you will receive an email confimring you are on the waitlist. If a place becomes available you will be notified by email. If you are not advised of a place then you are not registered for the training.

If you are on a waitlist you are NOT registered for the training. Hence we advise against committing to travel, accommodation or other expenses in anticipation of the event.

Can I send the invoice to someone else?
Yes you can. When you register for a training you can specify up to two separate billing addresses for up to two separate invoices. This means a third party (like a workplace) can pay your account. Or you can have two others (e.g. two workplaces) pay parts of the bill on separate invoices.
Can I register for someone else?

Our registration process is primarily designed for training participants to sign up and register themselves for training. This enable participants to view a record of training attended within their DBTNZ account. Also, for training where an application is required, we need to ensure the person is submitting their own details so we can determine their suitability.

It is possible for an administrator to sign up their colleagues. See our section on Administrator Accounts.

Administrator Accounts

Our system is designed for users to make and manage their own accounts. If in doubt, it is usually more straightforward for people register themselves. However, If you are an administrator for a DHB or other NZ organization, you can request the ability to sign up your colleagues for training. First, sign up for your own dbtnz account by (i) completing our user sign-up and (ii) clicking the 'confirm' link that will be emailed to you. Next, email us via our contact page to request administrator rights to sign up your colleagues. Please state why you are requetsing these rights instead of letting your colleagues register for themselves.

Administrators are not able to register their colleagues for some advanced trainings where the application process requires detailed professional information to help us determine the applicant’s eligibility.

Note if an administrator registers 'as if' they are their colleague, it may get confusing if the colleague later wants to regsiter for more training or if the administrator later wants to register another colleague.

Can I change who my invoice is addressed to?
Unless the invoice has already been paid, you can log in to your account, go to the training page, click the 'Your details' tab and change the invoice details. Then if you click the 'download your invoice' link the new version will have those details.
Can I register with a paper form?
Sorry no. The only way to regster is on-line.
International Payments

Bank details for international payments:

  • Bank of New Zealand, Wellington.
  • SWIFT code: BKNZNZ22
  • Routing number: NZ020168.

Banks may use a range of payment codes and systems. You can view this BNZ page for more suggestions.

NOTE: Banks charge us an international payment fee of NZ$25. Please add this amount to all international payments.

Certificates of Attendance
Printed Certificates and online records

Printed certificates of attendance are provided to all participants who sign-in and sign-out of each day of the training and attend 100% of the training. These are provided when leaving the final day of training unless extra tasks are required (eg for some advanced trainings).

We are not able to provde replacement copies of printed certificates.

All participants can also download a PDF statement of attendance. This will summarize the training and record your level of completion.  Log in to our site. From the ‘Training’ menu go to the ‘Your Training’ page. Click the ‘Download your training attendance record’ link for the completed training.

What is DBTNZ
DBTNZ has been established by a small group of NZ clinicians who want to enable the implementation and delivery of high quality DBT services in New Zealand.

DBTNZ is an international affiliate of the US based Linehan Institute. The Linehan Instituite was established by Dr Marsha Linehan with the goals of making compassionate and effective treatments available to all persons with complex and severe mental disorders. Behavioral Tech, LLC, is the company aligned with The Linehan Institute to provide training in DBT and related treatments. DBTNZ offers training in collaboration and under licence from Behavioral Tech.
Our trainers

Dr Emily Cooney is a clinical psychologist who has worked in the US, the UK, and New Zealand with children and adults in a range of inpatient and outpatient settings, with a particular focus on DBT. She is an assistant professor at the Yale School of Medicine, where she co-directs the DBT and DBT for substance use disorder teams within an Intensive Outpatient Program. Emily served as a research therapist on two trials of DBT under Dr Marsha Linehan, and was the principal investigator on two DBT feasibility trials in New Zealand. One examined DBT for self-harming adolescents, and the other trialled DBT skills training for men with anger-related problems. She provides training in DBT via Behavioral Tech as well as DBTNZ, and loves opportunities to come home and spend time with dedicated clinicians in Aotearoa.

Mike Batcheler is a clinical psychologist who has worked in NZ and UK mental health settings since the mid-1990s after initially working for NZ Department of Corrections in the early 1990s. He was a founding member of New Zealand’s first dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) programme in 1998 and works as a DBT therapist, skills trainer and programme coordinator in an adult DHB DBT programme. He was a research therapist on a NZ DBT trial with self-harming adolescents and their families. He is a founding member of DBTNZ.  Mike has considerable experience consulting and training in New Zealand. He has been a trainer for a number of Behavioral Tech licensed events including DBT intensive trainings. He is a DBT-Linehan Board of Certification Certified Clinician™ and has experience in DBT adherence coding.


Dr Kirsten Davis is a Clinical Psychologist who has worked with both adolescents and adults across both public mental health and private sectors for the last two decades. Kirsten is a founding member of DBTNZ. Kirsten was involved in development, implementation and coordination of the first DBT Programme for adolescents and their families at the in New Zealand. Kirsten was a co-investigator in a randomized feasibility trial of DBT for adolescents and their families in New Zealand. She has extensive experience in DBT consultation, supervision and training in community outpatient, inpatient, forensic, residential (care & protection settings) and schools. She has been a trainer for many Behavioural Tech licensed events including DBT Intensive Training. Kirsten is particulary interested in implementation and development of sustainable DBT programmes across a variety of different settings. 

Training team

Shelly Hindle is a Clinical Psychologist who has worked for over 10 years in DBT teams in adolescent services and more recently in the area of eating disorders. She was the lead researcher on a treatment development study for adolescents utilising DBT to treat eating disorders. She currently works for a DHB specialty Eating Disorder service and is developing DBT treatment for multi-problematic Anorexia Nervosa. She has presented at both national and international conferences on DBT for eating disorders. Shelly also provides DBT specific supervision to individuals and teams and consultation to DBT clinician’s around eating disorders.

Dr Tessa Brudevold-Iversen is a Clinical Psychologist who specialises in DBT for adolescents and has more recently been involved in treatment development of DBT for eating disorders.  She was a co-researcher on a treatment development project utilising DBT to treat adolescents with eating disorders and emotional dysregulation and regularly provides DBT trainings for mental health services, NGOs, and universities.  Tessa facilitates Family Connections groups and has been involved in this since it first started in New Zealand.  She did DBT-specific post-doctoral study in Seattle, Washington, USA working with Marsha Linehan and other Behavioral Tech clinicians.  Tessa provides DBT supervision and consultation to both individual clinicians and teams.