Apply for our Peer Training Course

DBSA Peer Specialist Core Training

DBSA is a recognized leader in training for the peer specialist workforce: people who use their lived recovery experience to assist others in regaining hope and moving forward to achieve their goals. Learn about Peer Specialists.

DBSA Peer Specialist Core Training is a 5-day training course that prepares people who live with mental health conditions to support the recovery of their peers. Facilitated by nationally recognized trainers, this comprehensive course delivers a foundation in recovery principles, peer support intervention skills, and ethical practice.

The DBSA Peer Specialist training curriculum was first developed in affiliation with Appalachian Consulting Group, Inc., innovators of the pioneering Georgia Certified Peer Specialist Project, and supported under a cooperative agreement with CMHS/SAMHSA.

Two Ways to Participate

  1. Next core training course:
    March 2–6, 2015
    Chicago, Illinois
    Download application (PDF) or apply online.

    Learn how you can seek outside funding support for training participation.

  2. Sponsor a DBSA Peer Specialist training course in your area:
    DBSA trains groups of 15-30 on a contract basis, and we can customize training to meet local needs. Request additional information.

Post-Training Testing

Post-training testing measures participant knowledge of core training competencies and takes place online. Cost of testing is included registration fees.

More Information on DBSA Peer Specialist Training

DBSA Veterans Peer Specialist Training

Peer Specialist Continuing Education and Advanced Training

Are you already certified and looking for additional continuing education opportunities? Learn more.


To learn about Peer Specialist training and certification requirements in a particular state, contact your statewide consumer organization or view a list of state Peer Specialist training and certification programs compiled by the Texas Institute for Excellence in Mental Health, University of Texas at Austin.

There’s a rapidly-growing evidence base on effectiveness of peer support services and Peer Specialists.

Here are some relevant research findings:

In 2007, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a guidance letter to states interested in utilizing Medicaid-billable peer support services which stated, “Peer support services are an evidence-based mental health model of care which consists of a qualified peer support provider who assists individuals with their recovery from mental illness and substance use disorders.” More information on Medicaid-billable peer support in states is available through the Pillars of Peer Support Summit reports.

The International Association of Peer Specialists (INAPS) is a non-profit networking organization dedicated to peer support in mental health systems.

Join Our Peer Partnership Mailing List

Be the first to hear about new DBSA training and networking opportunities.

Onsite Training

Bring DBSA training or consultation to your location.