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Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for psychosis (CBTp)

CBT for psychosis: Agency-wide training options

Training, and ongoing consultation, is available for agencies who want to train staff in formulation driven CBTp, CBTp informed skills or a combination of the two approaches. Training modules can be tailored to the needs of the agency.

What is CBTp?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for psychosis (CBTp) was initially developed as an individual treatment, and later as a group based intervention, to reduce the distress associated with the symptoms of psychosis and to improve functioning. Studies have demonstrated that CBTp can result in decreased positive symptoms, improvement in negative symptoms, and improved functioning (Wykes et al 2008; Burns et al, 2014; Turner et al, 2014, van der Gaag, Valmaggia & Smit, 2014). In addition, there is evidence to suggest CBTp can be effective in preventing, or delaying, the transition to full psychosis when used with individuals identified as being at risk of developing psychosis (Stafford et al, 2013). From these studies CBTp has emerged as an evidence based intervention recommended as an adjunct to medication management (Dixon et al, 2009; NICE 2013; NICE 2014).

We offer two models of training:

Preparing for training in CBTp or CBTp informed interventions

Both of these training models include an initial training preparation period that involves consultation with key stakeholders to ensure that the training materials fit the needs of the service and clinicians. During this consultation different potential modules will be discussed and incorporated into the training plan as needed. For example, modules may include:

  • Review of basic CBT skills
  • Working with anxiety and depression
  • Attenuated psychotic symptoms
  • Incorporating families into treatment
  • Addressing trauma
  • Working with systematized delusions
  • Team based formulation
  • Group CBTp approaches

It is important that clinicians who are engaged in the training are aware of the time and clinical commitment to the training. We can assist with discussions regarding organizational readiness and identification of appropriate staff members to participate in the training to ensure training is utilized in an effective manner.

Example scenarios for training in the different models

Scenario 1: CBTp Informed Skills

An early psychosis team consisting of a team leader, 2 case managers, a nurse practitioner, and a Supported Education and Employment Specialist. The case managers predominantly meet with their clients in the community and provide support around social and functional needs. However, they have highlighted the need for additional skills in addressing psychotic symptoms and understanding triggers for these symptoms and how the symptoms are maintained. None of the team members offer ongoing therapy and all clinical encounters are done in the community.  

Scenario 2: Formulation Driven CBTp

A Clinical High Risk for psychosis (CHRp) service consisting of a psychiatrist, 4 therapists, a case manager, peer specialist and occupational therapist. The whole team attend a three-day training focusing on formulation and interventions specific to CHRp and the four therapists proceed to weekly consultation and tape review to ensure they are able to deliver CBTp to competence. Other team members join the weekly case consultation calls to engage in clinical case discussion and to coordinate around how best to support the client from a team perspective.

Scenario 3: CBTp informed skills and Formulation driven CBTp hybrid

Three fully staffed community mental health teams attend a five day training covering CBTp informed skills and formulation driven CBTp. The five days are arranged so that the whole team is present for the first (orientation) and last day of training (discussion of integration of skills across the team) while days 2-4 are broken out into two different sub trainings with therapy staff attending the Formulation Driven CBTp and non-therapy staff attending the CBTp skills training. Following the training all staff attend the weekly consultation calls arranged by team allowing for full team integration of the model and case conceptualization across different professions.  


"Katie has provided me the most thorough consultation that I have experienced. I am really understanding the essence of CBTp and recognizing how beneficial it has been for me in my work with my clients. Katie's feedback has been clear, concise, timely and validating. She challenges me in a way that makes me feel safe to do so in front of my colleagues and is creative with her walking me through each step and providing insightful possibilities for interventions that keep me, my client and the model in mind. One of my biggest values in life is growth- personal and professional. CBTp through Stanford U and specifically Katie have been so helpful in that endeavor to grow professionally. I have even been able to incorporate some of these skills into my own personal life, which has been very helpful to me in knowing somewhat what it feels like to be on the other side. I'm enjoying this process!"

Janitzia Rodriguez, Contra Costa County Behavioral Health Services

"CBTp consultation has been an invaluable tool when it comes to mastering my CBTp technique. First Hope hosted a 3-day training and paired that with a year of subsequent consultation calls. This process has enabled me to take my previous experience with CBT and really focus on the mastery of the different components. Katie was very thorough with her feedback on my sessions and gave specific examples and real-world approaches to apply CBTp in a clinical setting."

- Brandon Frazier LMFT. First Hope

"Onsite training for the Kickstart team on CBT for psychosis was an excellent experience. It allowed those who have participated in previous CBTp trainings to be refreshed while newer staff were able to explore different forms of interventions to use with their clients. The interventions we learned not only allowed each training participant to further understand what direction to take with their clients, but it encouraged further case conceptualization as a team. Having these discussions as a Kickstart team will allow us to strengthen our communication and understanding of a case, and how to apply all of our strengths to help an individual progress in treatment."

Michael Garrett, Kickstart Program, San Diego

"Training and consultation with Kate Hardy has helped me to hone specific skills that CBTp values, such as collaboration, goal setting, and reducing distress through supporting patient’s personalized meaning making of their experiences."

Shoshana Green, UCSF


Clinical Professor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences


Kate Hardy is a California Licensed Psychologist who has specialized in working with individuals with psychosis for over 15 years in both research and clinical settings. Dr. Hardy received her doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom. She has worked in specialist early psychosis services in both the UK and the US, including UCSF’s Prodrome Assessment Research and Treatment (PART) program, where she completed her post-doctoral fellowship, and as Clinical Director for the Prevention and Recovery from Early Psychosis (PREP) program. Dr. Hardy has significant experience in providing CBTp to individuals with early psychosis, and those at risk of developing psychosis, in both individual and group settings and integration of this clinical intervention to broader systems and staff teams. She has led multiple trainings and workshops in CBTp to a wide variety of audiences including community clinicians, psychiatrists, and families, and provides ongoing supervision and consultation in this approach. Dr. Hardy is also involved in the implementation of national strategies to increase dissemination of early psychosis models with the aim of bringing these cutting edge treatments to a broader population.
Clinical Associate Professor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences


Dr. Eisen is a Clinical Associate Professor and CA Licensed Clinical Psychologist in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine. She works with the INSPIRE clinic at Stanford and is the Inpatient Director of Psychological Services for the acute inpatient psychiatric units at Stanford Hospital. Her research and clinical interest center on therapeutic interventions that support recovery for individuals living with serious mental illness, in particular for individuals experiencing psychosis. Dr. Eisen received her bachelor’s degree from Cornell University, and her PhD from the University of Connecticut, and completed postdoctoral training at Stanford University. She is trained in CBT for psychosis (CBTp) and provides training and consultation in CBTp and CBTp informed skills to community-based clinicians, graduate students, medical students and residents, to support the use of recovery-oriented psychosocial interventions with individuals experiencing psychosis.
Clinical Associate Professor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences


Dr. Nichole Olson is a Clinical Assistant Professor and licensed psychologist in the INSPIRE Clinic and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) program at Stanford. Dr. Olson completed her masters and doctorate degrees at Northwestern University in Chicago and finished her postdoctoral fellowship at Stanford University. Dr. Olson specializes in evidence-based, recovery-oriented care for individuals with psychosis, providing both individual and group Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Psychosis (CBTp) to adults within the INSPIRE Clinic. In addition, Dr. Olson leads trainings and ongoing consultation for providers learning to implement CBTp. As a clinician and Assistant Director of Stanford’s DBT program, Dr. Olson also provides individual DBT treatment for those with emotion regulation difficulties.

Contact Information

More information: Dr. Kate Hardy at khardy@stanford.edu

Current and past training contracts in these models include:

  • University of California, San Francisco
  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
  • California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
  • Department of State Hospitals
  • Michigan State/Network 180
  • Contra Costa County Behavioral Health
  • Santa Clara County Behavioral Health
  • Stanford Health Care Psychiatric Inpatient Unit

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