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© Shawnee Scientific Press, 2018. From: Dixon, M.R. & Paliliunas, D. (2017).  AIM: A behavior analytic curriculum for social-emotional development in children. Carbondale, IL: Shawnee Scientific Press.

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Reviews

What are leaders in the field saying about AIM?

“In this curriculum, Dixon and Paliliunas weave together two practices, meditation and ACT, with a theoretical orientation, behavior analysis. The book is unique amongst curricula for children with social/emotional difficulties in that Dixon and Paliliunas build off contemporary research and practice to offer highly accessible stand-alone intervention modules, any of which can be implemented independent of the others. This book should be a “go to” for behavior therapists, teachers, and parents; for anyone who wants to help a child struggling with social or emotional difficulties.”

Cynthia M. Anderson, PhD, BCBA-D

Senior Vice President, Applied Behavior Analysis; Director, National Autism Center May Institute

“A book that tries to integrate ABA and ACT is no mean feat. The fact that the authors are highly qualified and experienced behavior analysts is reassuring before one even opens the cover, because it is too easy to try to integrate ABA and ACT with language that belies basic behavioral principles. At the present time, there is no established scientific way to seamlessly combine ABA and ACT, either conceptually or in practice, and this may never come. But the authors of this volume have chosen to try and have, impressively, not thrown the behavioral baby out with the clinical bath water. No one book will have all the answers to this complex set of questions. But I am impressed that the authors try, while staying as close as possible to established behavioral principles and the types of interventions these suggest. This book is worth a thorough read for anyone interested in meeting the most significant behavioral and mental health challenges our children face.”

Yvonne Barnes-Holmes, PhD

Ghent University

“This timely and important book describes the integration of three effective and well-established interventions, mindfulness, acceptance and commitment therapy, and applied behavior analysis, into a coherent and unified treatment approach with children struggling to adapt and find meaning in an often chaotic and challenging world. It is a must read for any behavioral health professional wanting to help make a difference in these children’s lives.”

Michael J. Dougher, Ph.D.

President, Association for Behavior Analysis International

"This is the work schools have been waiting for. Couched in the science of behavior analysis, Dixon and Paliliunas’ AIM Program integrates mindfulness and acceptance and commitment therapy to provide a cutting-edge, yet digestible curriculum to behavioral health providers, school personnel, and parents alike. The "dynamic context" sets the stage for altering the ways in which children relate to their challenging thoughts, feelings, and emotions as they navigate life, and I believe this text serves as a catalyst for service providers and parents to think flexibly about how we interact with and create nurturing, maximized learning environments for children, our future."

Adam Hahs, PhD

Arizona State University

“Packed with creative methods for moving behavior change processes of known importance, this book gives practitioners the scientific and practical understanding needed to apply this modern form of behavior analysis to children. Wise and easy to use, it will make a difference in your practice.”

Steven C. Hayes, PhD

University of Nevada

“An incredible synthesis of the science of human behavior and mindfulness that demonstrates the substantial benefits of training children to closely attend to and cope with their own private events, and how that might lead to real and lasting change in individual lives and families. The potential of this program is limitless. This may represent the missing component of so many other approaches, such as Positive Behavioral Invention and Supports (PBIS) and character education. In fact, this program could easily replace most other attempts by helping parents, teachers, and other professional learn to enjoy challenging children for who they are and capture the joy in the now. As a resource for trainers of behavior analysts, this program gives a straightforward approach that helps behavior analysts incorporate mindfulness and ACT in a structured, scientifically-valid manner that is consistent with the foundational principles of behavior analysis. We might all look back in 20 years and agree that AIM is one of the most important works in all of child psychology and behavior analysis. This is a must read for anyone who works with children and is serious about changing lives.”

James Moore, PhD

University of Southern Mississippi

“AIM hits the mark! Dixon & Paliliunas have created an excellent blend of the most effective applications of modern behavioral science. The AIM Curriculum will help professionals accurately target childhood behavioral concerns with precision and compassion.”

Daniel J. Moran, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Past-President of ACBS

“Sadly, children face stress in multiple settings. Dixon and Paliliunas propose clinical behavior analysis as a solution. Providing numerous resources for adults who work with children in broad contexts, the AIM program includes brilliant daily lessons, individual and systems-level point tracking, and monitoring sheets. Combining acceptance, values, and behavioral activation, this book clearly presents creative techniques – laid out in modules, clear figures, and “try it” exercises. The wonderful emphasis on a functional approach to behavior and addressing context in multiple ways, such as varying support level and treatment depth, will be beneficial to teachers and clinicians alike. I highly recommend this book!”

Amy R. Murrell, Ph.D.

University of North Texas, Co-author of The Joy of Parenting

“Dixon and Paliliunas’ work represents an accessible and creative integration of three of the most transformative behavior change technologies of our time. In taking the perspective that our children’s struggles are intertwined with the contexts in which they occur, this work empowers those who care for and work with children to change those contexts and, in doing so, bring meaningful change where once struggle was dominant.  I strongly recommend this book to anyone interested in giving children - all children - the opportunity to truly thrive.”      

Emily K. Sandoz, PhD

University of Louisiana at Lafayette

“This is an exceptional addition to the growing body of practical resources for the applied behavior analyst. Dixon and Paliliunas articulate the problems faced by children in simple, common sense terms. The AIM approach teaches three essential skills: moving on when thinking is getting in the way of acting, identifying what matters most, and behaving with respect to larger, later rewards instead of working for smaller, sooner ones. The book is filled with notes on conceptual developments that matter to the practitioner, activities, worksheets, a suggested reinforcement system, and a straightforward discussion of the way ACT more broadly, and AIM specifically, fit within competencies defined in the BACB 5th Edition Task List and the scope of practice of certified behavior analysts. Simply put: this is the book you’ve been waiting for.”

Thomas G. Szabo, PhD., BCBA-D

Florida Institute of Technology

“AIM is a cutting-edge system based on the best and latest of what behavioral science has to offer. The book is simple and practical for parents and professionals and will help youth develop meaningful behaviors that move them toward what they truly care about in life. AIM is an essential tool in the toolbox of any professional who wants to help young people live more effective, fulfilling lives, based on values, mindfulness, and compassion.”

 Jonathan Tarbox, PhD, BCBA-D

University of Southern California

“In the aftermath of the decades long push towards self-esteem, it is wonderful to find an alternative that teaches children to pause, to hold thoughts and impulses lightly, to reflect on purpose and meaning, and to act in accord with what matters. We live in a feel goodist culture and our children need an alternative. With feet solidly on the ground in applied behavior analysis, Mark Dixon and Dana Paliliunas have crafted a book that offers a curriculum that fits the challenges of the modern classroom."

Kelly G. Wilson, PhD

University of Mississippi

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