Professor Colin Espie

Cognitive Behavioural Therapeutics (CBTx) for Insomnia

20th October 2021

Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences

University of Oxford

Colin Espie Photo on 18-01-2021 at 16.29
Colin Espie Photo on 10-11-2020 at 10.01

Cognitive Behavioural Therapeutics (CBTx) for insomnia 


This workshop will explain the central importance, across the lifespan, of sleep and circadian regulation to our functional health and wellbeing. Particular reference will be made to the role that sleep plays in the regulation of emotion and in delivering cognitive capability. As well as exploring the nature of sleep itself, we will discuss how disorders of sleep present, how they can be assessed in routine clinical practice and how they can be most effectively managed. There will be a major emphasis on acquiring practical skills particularly in relation to cognitive behavioural therapeutics (CBTx) for insomnia. The course will be illustrated with case material.

Learning outcomes

  1. to understand that sleep is nature's primary provision for brain health, including mental health

  2. to understand how sleep loss impairs human function

  3. to understand how to screen for common sleep disorders, and how to conduct a clinical assessment of insomnia

  4. to understand how to implement CBTx to treat insomnia in everyday practice

Recommended reading


  1. Kyle, S.D., Henry, A.L., Espie, C.A. (2020). Management of Insomnia and Circadian Rhythm Sleep-Wake Disorders. In Geddes, J.R., Andreasen, N.C., & Goodwin, G.M. (Ed.) New Oxford Textbook of Psychiatry, 3rd Edition. Oxford University Press, UK. (I can provide PDF)

  2. Espie, C.A., Emsley, R., Kyle, S.D., Gordon, C., Drake, C.L., Siriwardena, A.N., Cape, J., Ong, J.C., Sheaves, B., Foster, R., et al. (2019). Effect of Digital Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia on Health, Psychological Well-being, and Sleep-Related Quality of Life: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Psychiatry 76, 21-30. (open access)

  3. Wilson, S., Anderson, K., Baldwin, D., Dijk, D-J., Espie, A., Espie C.A., Gringas, P., Krystal, A., Nutt, D., Selsick, H & Sharpley, A. (2019). British Association for Psychopharmacology consensus statement on evidence -based treatment of insomnia, parasomnias and circadian rhythm disorders: An update. Journal of Psychopharmacology 33, 932-947. (open access)


  1. Espie, C.A. (2017) Introduction to Coping with Insomnia & Sleep Problems (2nd edition).  Little Brown Book Group, London [ISBN978-1-47213-854-5] 12. Espie, C.A. (2017) Introduction to Coping with Insomnia & Sleep Problems (2nd edition).  Little Brown Book Group, London [ISBN978-1-47213-854-5] (very brief booklet for patients)

  2. Espie, C.A. (2006) Overcoming Insomnia and Sleep Problems: A Self-Help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioral Techniques. Constable & Robinson Ltd., London [ISBN13: 978-184529-070-2/ ISBN10: 1-84529-070-4] (book for patients)

  3. Morin, C.M. & Espie, C.A. (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Sleep and Sleep Disorders (Oxford Library of Psychology) Oxford University Press, USA [ISBN-10: 019537620X] (reference book)

Forthcoming books

  1. Espie, C.A. (due September 2020) Overcoming Insomnia and Sleep Problems: A Self-Help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioral Techniques, 2nd edition. Little, Brown Book Group, London

  2. Espie, C.A. (due 2021) A Clinician’s Guide to Cognitive Behavioural Therapeutics (CBTx) for Insomnia. Cambridge University Press, UK


About Professor Espie

Prof Colin Espie BSc, MAppSci, PhD, DSc(Med), FBPsS, FRSM, CPsychol, CSci

Colin is the Professor of Sleep Medicine at the University of Oxford where he is Director of the Experimental & Clinical Sleep Medicine research programme, and Clinical Director of the Sleep & Circadian Neurosciences Institute ( He is also an Emeritus Professor of Clinical Psychology, at the University of Glasgow. He is internationally known for his work on insomnia and its treatment, using cognitive behavioural therapeutics (CBTx). He has published over 300 scientific papers and several textbooks. He is Deputy Editor of Journal of Sleep Research, serves on the editorial board of Sleep Medicine Reviews, and was awarded Honorary Fellow of the BABCP (British Association for Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies) in 2015, and the Mary A. Carskadon Outstanding Educator Award by the Sleep Research Society in 2017. He is actively involved in print, TV and social media regarding the science of sleep ( He also co-founded the developer of SleepioTM which is now widely available in the NHS-UK and in the US healthcare system.


Books by Professor Espie


Learn about insomnia from 'The Prof'

Click on the image to learn more about the online programme 'Sleepio'


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