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Digital Seminar

2017 Principles and Practice of CBT-I: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia

Donn Posner, Ph.D., DBSM |  Michael Perlis, Ph.D. |  Jason Ellis, Ph.D.
16 Hours 19 Minutes
Audio and Video
Oct 21, 2017
Product Code:
Media Type:
Digital Seminar
Never expires.


Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I) is now recommended as the first line treatment for chronic insomnia. This recommendation was, interestingly enough, made by the second largest medical organization in the United States (The ACP) and was published in the Annals of Internal Medicine (2016;165(2):125-133).

The recommendation is, in part, based on the following findings.  

  • CBT-I is as efficacious and effective as pharmacotherapy in the short run, and is more durable in the long run            
  • CBT-I has a more benign side effect profile than pharmacotherapy
  • CBT-I yields substantial improvement in sleep continuity, and does so largely irrespective of medical or psychiatric comorbidity.
  • CBT-I directly targets the factors that are thought to perpetuate insomnia (i.e., the mismatch between sleep opportunity and sleep ability).
  • CBT-I has been shown to work well even with patients with a long history of using hypnotics

The Penn Basic CBT-I Course is an intensive review of the principles and practice of this intervention. The 16 hour training, along with the conduct of practicum cases with supervision (peer consultation from credentialed BSM individuals [or established experts]) and targeted readings (Tx manuals and practice papers) should position established clinicians to 1) reliably and effectively deliver CBT-I and 2) be eligible for the credentialing exam that is in development by the SBSM and related agencies. For more information on the credentialing process, keep your eye on this space:




Donn Posner, Ph.D., DBSM's Profile

Donn Posner, Ph.D., DBSM Related seminars and products


Donn Posner, Ph.D., a Diplomate of Behavioral Sleep Medicine (DBSM), is working as a clinical/research psychologist for the Palo Alto VA.

Prior to his role at the VA, he spent 25 years as a clinical associate professor at Brown Medical School. He served as the director of clinical behavioral medicine for Rhode Island and Miriam hospitals and was also the director of behavioral sleep medicine for the Sleep Disorders Center of Lifespan Hospitals. For 20 of those years, Dr. Posner served as the primary supervisor for a rotation of the behavioral medicine track of the clinical psychology internship at Brown. He also mentored post-doctoral fellows and lectured on behavioral sleep medicine and anxiety disorders to interns, fellows, and residents in internal medicine and psychiatry. In addition, he was a consultant for the Veteran’s Administration roll out of CBT-I and trained VA clinicians across the country in the implementation of this treatment.

Dr. Posner is one of the authors of Cognitive Behavioral Treatment of Insomnia: A Session-by-Session Guide (New York: Springer/Verlag). The book is intended for clinical trainees and non-insomnia sleep specialists, as well as more experienced clinicians from outside the sleep medicine field who wish to learn how to provide empirically validated cognitive behavioral treatment for insomnia (CBT-I).

Dr. Posner is a member of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and became one of the first certified behavioral sleep medicine specialists recognized by that group. He is also a founding member of the Society of Behavioral Sleep Medicine and has achieved the status of Diplomate with the SBSM, the highest level of qualification and competency that the organization bestows.

Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Donn Posner is adjunct clinical associate professor at Stanford University of Medicine. He is a clinical researcher for Palo Alto Veterans Institute for Research. Dr. Posner receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Non-financial: Donn Posner is a member of the American Psychological Association; Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies; and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.

Michael Perlis, Ph.D.'s Profile

Michael Perlis, Ph.D. Related seminars and products

Director of Behavioral Sleep Medicine Program, Associate Professor

University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine

Michael L. Perlis, PhD is internationally known for his work in the area of Behavioral Sleep Medicine (BSM). He is a coauthor of the first text book in this field and he is the senior author of a published CBT-I treatment manual and a larger text summarizing all BSM treatments. His research includes neurocognitive phenomena in insomnia, the cognitive and/or behavior effects of sedative hypnotics and placebos, the development of alternative treatment approaches for insomnia, and sleep in depression. His work has been, and continues to be, funded by the National Institutes of Health and he has published more than 100 articles and chapters on the sleep research related topics.

In addition to his academic endeavors, he has served on the editorial boards of Sleep, the Journal of Sleep Research, the journal of Sleep Medicine Research and the journal of Behavioral Sleep Medicine. Dr. Perlis has also served as a member, or chair, of several committees and task forces of the Sleep Research Society and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and he was a founding member of the Society of Behavioral Sleep Medicine and served as the society's first president (2010-2011).

Jason Ellis, Ph.D.'s Profile

Jason Ellis, Ph.D. Related seminars and products

Jason Ellis, PhD, is a Professor of Sleep Science and Director of the Northumbria Sleep Laboratory and Clinic in the United Kingdom. He is a qualified Somnologist – Expert in Behavioural Sleep Medicine from European Sleep Research Society and a Practicing Health Psychologist under the HCPC. He splits his time between his basic research interests: the pathophysiology of sleep disorders (Insomnia, Restless Legs Syndrome, and Circadian Rhythm Disorders), the natural history of Insomnia, and his applied work on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I). Within the latter framework he examines the impact of novel adjunct therapies, the influence of social factors on adherence, and the effective delivery of CBT-I in complex cases and environments. He has worked within the National Health Service in the United Kingdom, delivering CBT-I to individuals with a range of physical and psychological conditions and serves on the editorial boards of Behavioral Sleep Medicine and Sleep Health. He has consulted for various industries and third-sector organizations and provided national guidelines to the British and Scottish governments on the identification and management of sleep problems. He is a serious advocate of public engagement and professional education with regard to behavioral sleep medicine and regularly trains CBT-I to clinicians and primary care physicians in the United Kingdom.

Additional Info

Program Information

Access for Self-Study (Non-Interactive)

Access never expires for this product.

Target Audience

Clinical psychologists, clinical trainees, counselors, PhD/NP level nurses, and physicians interested in the assessment and treatment of insomnia



  • Welcome announcements and orientation
  • Basics of sleep and behavioural model of insomnia
  • Pharmacological and behavioural treatment options for insomnia
  • Assessment of insomnia Part I-Definition, differential diagnosis, indications for treatment.
  • Session 1- Assessment Part 2-CBT-I forms, devices, setting up sleep diaries
  • Session 2- Treatment planning, setting up sleep restriction and stimulus control


  • Session 3- Adherence issues, problem solving and sleep hygiene.
  • Session 4- Cognitive Therapy- General and targeted therapies
  • Session 5, 6, & 7- Titration of sleep window, treatment delivery, therapist factors, and charting.
  • Session 8-  Relapse prevention
  • Concluding Remarks


  1. Articulate the basics of sleep nomenclature including sleep period, phase, continuity, and architecture.
  2. Discriminate acute insomnia from Insomnia Disorder and articulate the importance of treating the chronic form as a specifically targeted co-morbidity.
  3. Assess for the most common intrinsic sleep disorders such as OSA, RLS, PLMS, circadian rhythm disorders, and narcolepsy.
  4. Evaluate the common medications used in the treatment of insomnia and understand their relative strengths and weaknesses.
  5. Communicate the relative efficacy of pharmacotherapy and cognitive behavioural therapies for insomnia.
  6. Communicate the evidence for the efficacy of CBT-I for both primary and co-morbid insomnia disorder.
  7. Apply the principles of the Spielman model of insomnia and employ it in the delivery of CBT-I.
  8. Apply the principles of Borbely’s two-process model of sleep regulation and demonstrate how to utilize this concept in the deployment of CBT-I.
  9. Score and analyze patient sleep diary data, and create a treatment plan based upon the data in the course of CBT-I treatment.
  10. Apply the techniques of Sleep Restriction therapy to the treatment of chronic Insomnia.
  11. Apply the techniques of Stimulus Control to the treatment of chronic Insomnia
  12. Educate patients in sleep hygiene principles and tailor to individual needs.
  13. Apply the techniques of cognitive therapeutic strategies to the treatment of chronic insomnia.
  14. Calculate sleep efficiency and titrate patient sleep windows
  15. Anticipate, identify and problem solve common resistances in CBT-I.
  16. Implement an action plan to prevent patient relapse.

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