DBT skills class usually has two instructors. There is a main teacher and a co-leader. The main teacher does most of the skills education and the co-leader is there to support individual students with their technical needs, support using skills in the class if needed and other supportive duties.
There are 4 general subjects taught in DBT called modules. These include Mindfulness, Emotion Regulation, Distress Tolerance and Interpersonal Skills. Mindfulness is included in each of the other modules at the beginning, so repeats 3 times. Students either commit to completing one round of all four of these modules, or two rounds. One round will take you close to six months, two rounds will take a full year more or less. If you are in suicidal crisis, or self-harming or your life is in a state of crisis and chaos, you will need to enroll in full DBT and commit to a full year of DBT skills group. If you are taking DBT due to some emotion dysregulation issues as a supplement to another therapy you are in, this is not full DBT and you may not need to commit to a full year.
DBT classes are on-going. When you join class you will find that the other students will have been in class for various lengths of time depending on when they joined. You may even witness a graduation close to when you start. You can expect that people will be talking about skills you have yet to be introduced to, while that can be uncomfortable for some, it is ok. You are only expected to know the skills you have been introduced to. The benefit of having some older and newer students in the same class is that students learn from each other's experience.
Class Structure: Classes meet for two hours. The first part of class involves a mindfulness practice and homework review from the previous week. There is a 10 minute break during which folks take care of body needs and chat in the zoom room. The second half of class covers new skills. Students are expected to practice the new skills in their daily life the next week and document their practice to share during the homework review section. We usually end with a gratitude or other closure exercise.