Advancing the Field: Intro to DBT Interpersonal Effectiveness Skills

This September 23 webinar, open to the general public, will serve as an introduction to Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) Interpersonal Effectiveness skills. This is the final webinar in our 3-part summer DBT webinar series.

Webinar Description:  DBT is a complex, integrative treatment program originally developed to treat chronic and severe suicidality and first validated among a sample of individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder. As research on the benefits of comprehensive DBT grows, interest in incorporating elements of the DBT protocol, particularly DBT skills training, into other treatment approaches has also expanded. Join us for the final of three 1-hour webinars providing a brief introduction to several DBT concepts for non-DBT clinicians. In this training we will focus the DBT Interpersonal Effectiveness skills module and learn interpersonal concepts and techniques that are equally applicable both clients and clinicians. Attendees will learn about the multiple ways we can conceptualize effectiveness in the interpersonal domain, which DBT clinicians refer to as Objectives Effectiveness, Relationship Effectiveness, and Self-Respect Effectiveness. We will discuss the importance of prioritizing interpersonal goals and clarifying specific interpersonal objectives. Finally, attendees will learn to use the DBT skill of DEAR MAN to maximize the likelihood of obtaining a specific interpersonal objective. This training is an introduction to the material and assumes no prior knowledge of DBT skills.

Target Audience: Behavioral health providers

Instructional Level: Intermediate

Learning Objectives: Following this 1-hour webinar, participants will be able to:

  • Distinguish between three types of interpersonal effectiveness – Objectives Effectiveness, Relationship Effectiveness, and Self-Respect Effectiveness.
  • Describe the DBT DEAR MAN skill, including what it is and when it is used
  • Develop a DEAR script to ask for a specific interpersonal objective


Alisa Breetz, Ph.D.
Cohen Veterans Network
Senior Manager, Clinical Practice

As Senior Manager of Clinical Practice at CVN, Dr. Breetz provides assistance and guidance for network-wide clinical practice initiatives, including evidence-based practice and measurement-based care to support the delivery of clinical care to our veterans and military families.

Following residency training at Duke University Medical Center, Breetz worked for seven years as a clinician and clinical supervisor in a private group practice where she specialized in the delivery and dissemination of evidence-based practices, particularly Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) and Prolonged Exposure (PE). During that time, she also served as an adjunct instructor of psychology at American University and presented invited clinical trainings at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and Harvard Medical School/ Massachusetts Mental Health Center. She brings expertise in suicide prevention and trauma treatment and additional experience working with veterans at the Washington, DC VA hospital and with service members at Andrews Air Force Base and the US Naval Academy.

Dr. Breetz completed her BA in cognitive science at Brown University and her MA and PhD in clinical psychology at American University.

Participation Information:

  • Fee: This webinar is available free of charge
  • Registration: Registration is required for non-CVN participants. You may register online at
  • System Requirements: This webinar will be held online via Zoom Communications. If you are unfamiliar with Zoom, we HIGHLY recommend testing your computer and network with the following link:
  • Course Interaction: This webinar will be held via the Zoom Webinar format. Participants will be able to ask typed questions via the chat function, but will not be on camera or able to share audio. There will be opportunity for Q&A and sharing of questions is encouraged.
  • Questions, comments, concerns, grievances, and requests for accommodation: Please email the training team at


CE Information:

Participants who complete this training in its entirety will be eligible for 1 CE.  Cohen Veterans Network is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Cohen Veterans Network maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

Cohen Veterans Network, provider #1648 is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved as ACE providers. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. Cohen Veterans Network maintains responsibility for this course. ACE provider approval period: 3/31/21-3/31/24. Social workers completing this course receive 1 continuing education credit.

In order to receive CEs, participants will need to register, attend the webinar in its entirety, complete the post-webinar evaluation survey and pass the post-test. The post-webinar evaluation and post-test will be provided online via SurveyMonkey; the link will be emailed to all registrants following the webinar.  Participants will have two weeks to complete the survey. CE Certificates will be emailed two weeks following the webinar.  For any questions related to the CE process, please email