NaBITA Newsletter
September 2, 2015

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In NaBITA's monthly newsletter we share a Tip of the Week, spotlight a resource relevant to the field, provide news, and share information about our upcoming events. In addition, each NaBITA newsletter brings you information relevant to the field of behavioral intervention and prevention, with current events and relevant resources. If you like the newsletter, we hope you will join NaBITA so that you can receive the weekly version of this great member benefit. Click here for more information.


Resource Spotlight

NaBITA is pleased to spotlight Threat Assessment Teams for Troubled Students: Putting the Pieces Together, by Alyssa Keehan, Risk Management Counsel, for United Educators. The publication can by used by institutions to guide their actions when establishing a threat assessment team or improving the operation of an existing team.


Tip of the Week

Counselors and Threat Assessment: Part 4

by Brian Van Brunt, Ed.D.


Dr. Brian Van Brunt recently sat down with Counseling Today, a publication of the American Counseling Association, to reflect on the role counselors play in threat assessment.  In this 4-part series, Dr. Van Brunt will share his insight on the state of the field with regard to violence assessment, counselor preparedness and helpful suggestions and resources for supplemental training on assessment and treatment.


In the introduction of your book, Harm to Others, you write, “The most effective solution to rampage violence is early, easy and frequent access to care for potential perpetrators.” How can counselors and psychologists address this problem?


To read the complete Tip, click here.


Join us at the 7th Annual NaBITA Conference

and the 6th Annual Campus Threat Management Institute


November 17-21, 2015

The Westin Riverwalk in San Antonio, TX



Early Bird Registration ends on September 4, 2015.

Register today!

For more information, please visit the NaBITA Conference webpage or contact:

Amanda Tarczynski, or (484) 321-3651


Early Bird Registration Rates End This Friday! Register TODAY!


Keynote Speaker Sessions


Opening Keynote
The Evolution of Behavioral Threat Assessment: Future Directions for Violence Prevention
Presented by Dewey G. Cornell, Ph.D., forensic clinical psychologist and Bunker Professor of Education in the Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia, Director of the U.Va. Virginia Youth Violence Project and a faculty associate of the Institute of Law, Psychiatry, and Public Policy. 

This presentation will examine how threat assessment has evolved from the broader field of risk assessment and what improvements are needed to establish it as an evidence-based practice. In the past 20 years behavioral threat assessment has emerged as a form of risk assessment with a distinguishing emphasis on targeted violence, attention to social ecology, and prevention through problem resolution. The advancement of threat assessment requires continued progression from an emphasis on prediction to multi-tiered prevention, from decisions guided by intuition to empirically-informed assessment, and from case reports to controlled studies. The presenter will illustrate these points with case experiences and research in Virginia public schools and higher education settings.

Dr. Cornell is a forensic clinical psychologist and Bunker Professor of Education in the Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia. Dr. Cornell is Director of the U.Va. Virginia Youth Violence Project and a faculty associate of the Institute of Law, Psychiatry, and Public Policy. His research and teaching is concerned with the prevention of youth violence and bullying, as well as the facilitation of healthy student development and achievement through a supportive and structured school climate. Dr. Cornell has worked with juvenile and adult violent offenders, testified in criminal proceedings and legislative hearings, and consulted on violence prevention efforts. He has authored more than 200 publications in psychology and education, including studies of juvenile homicide, school safety, bullying and threat assessment. Two of his books are School Violence: Fears Versus Facts, and Guidelines for Responding to Student Threats of Violence. He is currently conducting a federally-funded study of school climate and bullying in more than 700 Virginia secondary schools.


Closing Keynote
Learning to Kill: The Impact of Media Violence
Presented by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman, U.S. Army (Ret.), former Professor of Military Science and Psychology at West Point, co-author of Stop Teaching Our Kids to Kill: A Call to Action Against TV, Movie and Video Game Violence, and author of On Killing:  The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society.

This presentation will address several diverse topics which were brought together by the author’s experiences as:  (1) a military and law enforcement trainer and psychologist, (2) a trainer of health professionals, law enforcement personnel, and first responders in the aftermath of the Jonesboro, Springfield, Littleton, Nickel Mines Amish School, and Virginia Tech school shootings, (3) a consultant in the Paducah school shootings and other major murder cases, and (4) a speaker to the annual conventions of the AMA, APA and AAP.


Initially, Col. Grossman will examine the magnitude of violent crime in the US and around the world, the factors that all the school killers had in common, and the role of media violence as a new factor contributing to this phenomenon.  Then he will address powerful new data demonstrating the actual impact of media violence upon the brain (Indiana University Brain Scan Study) and a powerful new study demonstrating a significant reduction in violence and bullying through media reduction in children (the Stanford SMART Curriculum).  Finally, he will address the role of violent visual imagery in TV, movies and video games in causing the current 'virus of violence' in families, and in developed nations around the world.


Col. Grossman is a former West Point psychology professor, Professor of Military Science, and an Army Ranger who has combined his experiences to become the founder of a new field of scientific endeavor, which has been termed "killology." In this new field Col. Grossman has made revolutionary new contributions to our understanding of killing in war, the psychological costs of war, the root causes of the current "virus" of violent crime that is raging around the world, and the process of healing the victims of violence, in war and peace.

Col. Grossman co-authored Stop Teaching Our Kids to Kill: A Call to Action Against TV, Movie and Video Game Violence, which has received international acclaim. He is the author of On Killing, as well as On Combat; both books are on the U.S. Marine Corps Commandant's Required Reading List, as well as required reading at the FBI academy and numerous colleges and universities. He has presented to over 100 different colleges and universities worldwide, and has trained educators and law enforcement professionals, in the field of school safety, at the state and regional level, in all 50 states and over a dozen foreign nations. He helped train mental health professionals after the Jonesboro school shootings, and he was also involved in counseling or court cases in the aftermath of the Paducah, Springfield, Littleton, Virginia Tech, and Nickel Mines Amish school shootings.


Concurrent Speaker Sessions


A sampling of Concurrent Speaker sessions include:


Faculty and Staff Perceptions of a BAT: A Case Study Evaluation
Presented by Kerry Greenstein, Ed.D., Associate Dean of Students, Georgia Southern University

This session will discuss the results of a case study evaluation of a Behavior Assessment Team, where campus faculty and staff provided feedback regarding their experiences in working with the team. In particular, the study looked at perceptions of the reporting process, changes in the reported student after the report and subsequent team intervention, and the impact of the team on campus safety. Additionally, team members discussed criteria they felt were necessary in evaluating the success of the team. The findings, implications and recommendations for future research will be shared with attendees.


A Behavioral Team’s Experiences Working with Transgendered Students
Presented by Eileen Daniel, D.Ed., Associate Vice Provost for Academic Affairs; and Karen Logsdon, Ph.D., Assistant to the Vice President for Enrollment Management, SUNY Brockport

Over the last decade colleges and universities have experienced an increased number of students identifying as transgender or openly grappling with gender identity issues. Limited research finds that transgender students often feel marginalized and experience high rates of bullying and discrimination (Beemyn, Domingue, Pettitt, & Smith, 2005;Gazzola & Morrison, 2014; Walsh, et al., 2012). For example, in a national study of the campus climate for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) students, faculty, and staff, reported that nearly three-fourths of the respondents believed that transgender people were more likely than other population groups to be harassed at their colleges and universities (Goodrich, 2012). A handful of campuses have implemented trans-inclusive policies in residence life, health-care services, and physical facilities in the last few years, but most colleges and universities do not provide support for transgendered students. Many academic and student affairs professionals recognize that gay, lesbian, and bisexual students often struggle with establishing their sexual identities. Less acknowledged are the gender identity issues frequently faced by transgender students. This presentation focuses on two case studies involving transgendered students who were referred to the Student Behavioral Consultant Team with concerns related to their sexual identity. Strategies and techniques used to manage these ongoing concerns will be addressed in addition to federal regulations that provide protections and rights for gender nonconforming and transgender students.


Psychotherapists: Balancing BIT Teamwork and Client Care
Presented by Anne Eipe, Ph.D., Staff Psychologist/Clinical Coordinator, California State University, Northridge; and Jonna Fried, Psy.D., Faculty Counselor, California State University, Los Angeles

At times, participation on BITs threatens to interfere with adherence to psychotherapists’ professional ethics codes. However, licensed psychotherapists who actively treat the student population are in the best position on BITs to offer insights from a mental health perspective, encourage a client-centered approach, and have a key role in campus-wide collaborative remedies. This session will identify potential complex ethical problems arising from psychotherapist BIT participation, and interactively use vignettes to deliberate best practices.


Campus Threat Management Institute


Dates: November 17th - November 21st, 2015 (Tuesday evening to Saturday afternoon). The NaBITA Institute runs concurrently with the NaBITA Annual Conference, and then continues for two additional days. Institute registrants will attend the NaBITA Conference (included in the Institute registration fee), in an optional special track for Institute registrants. Attending the 2015 NaBITA Conference is a pre-requisite to attending the 2015 NaBITA Institute. You are not able to register for just the weekend sessions.

The NaBITA conference begins with the Opening Keynote on Tuesday, November 17th, at 7:30pm. The conference runs until 1:00pm on Thursday, November 19th. The Institute continues for the remainder of Thursday the 19th, all day on Friday the 20th, and then concludes at 1:00pm on Saturday, November 21st, 2015.

Institute Session Descriptions

A sampling of Institute sessions include:


Confidentiality & Contributing: Navigating the Unique Roles Counselors Play on BITs
Presented by Amy Murphy, Ph.D., Dean of Students/Managing Director, Center for Campus Life, Texas Tech University; Aaron “Chip” Reese, Ed.D., Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, Columbus State University, NaBITA President-Elect; and Josh Gunn, Ph.D., Director of Counseling and Psychological Services, Kennesaw State University, Past-President, American College Counseling Association

This presentation will help counselors and the other BIT members better understand the unique roles counselors find themselves playing on the team. Counselors will gain knowledge and skill needed to contribute to the their BIT, while also remaining true to their professional ethics and licensing laws. Other BIT members will walk away with a better understanding of the role of counselors and how to optimize their participation on the team. Specific topics of focus will include the intersection of mental health and licensure laws with FERPA and HIPPA; information and documentation on BIT software programs and in the counseling center; mandated assessment and tools that counselors use to assess risk; and postvention practices supporting the community and reporters. We will also review relevant case law and share personal experiences to further illustrate concepts and expand participants knowledge and skill.


Learning Objectives:


  • Participants will be able to describe multiple roles that counselors play on a BIT.
  • Participants will be able to articulate how mental health law, FERPA, and HIPPA relate to counselors ability to share information with the BIT.
  • Participants will be able to list common tools counselors use to asses risk.
  • Participants will practice with case studies and learn how to navigate the various mental health scenarios presented in cases.


The Pre-Attack Circumstances and Behaviors of School Shooters
Presented by Peter Langman, Ph.D., author of Why Kids Kill: Inside the Minds of School Shooters

This training will highlight the life circumstances of college rampage attackers, and why they were particularly vulnerable to stress. Though such attacks often seem to come out of the blue, there are common factors that drive people to commit acts of violence. Knowing the stresses that create the desperation that leads to campus shootings is critical to conducting threat assessments and intervening effectively with troubled students. Finally, the session will address the pattern of behavior and warning signs exhibited by school shooters leading up to their attacks.


Attendees will learn:

  • The psychopathic and/or psychotic traits that make school shooters vulnerable to stress.

  • To consider the impact of life circumstances when conducting threat assessments.

  • To identify warning signs of potential violence.

An Analysis of School Shooter Writings
Presented by Peter Langman, Ph.D., author of Why Kids Kill: Inside the Minds of School Shooters

Many shooters reveal their violent plans through their writings, whether in personal journals, school assignments, or online posts. Such “leakage” provides one of the best opportunities for preventing mass violence through early detection and prompt intervention. This interactive workshop explores common themes among the writings of school shooters. Participants will read and discuss student writing samples to identify indicators of potential danger. The session will also address different types of threats and the stages that rampage shooters move through from their initial idea to the actual execution of their plan, highlighting what information in their writings indicate that an attack may be imminent.


Attendees will learn:

  • To evaluate different types of threats of violence.

  • To recognize common themes in the writings of school shooters.

  • To assess the imminence of potential violence.

Pre-Conference Sessions


NaBITA will host two half-day pre-conference sessions on Tuesday, November 17th. Pre-con sessions are not included as part of your conference or Institute registration and require additional payment. Conference or Institute registration is required in order to attend a pre-con session.


Pre-Conference 1: Assessing Threat on Social Media
Presented by Brian Van Brunt, Ed.D., 2015 NaBITA President; Senior Executive Vice President for Professional Program Development, The NCHERM Group, LLC

This pre-conference workshop will offer clinicians, administrators, law enforcement, student conduct officers and those familiar with threat assessment principles an advanced topic review on how best to identify and assess social media threats in a higher education setting. The presenter will focus on social media posts that occur on popular platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Yik Yak and offer guidance on how to identify, gather data, assign a risk rating and intervene.


The workshop will draw from real life cases of threat drawn from social media posts on college campuses. Central to the discussion will be sorting out the difference among true threats, angry or disenfranchised writing, impulsive utterances, assignment specific response, predatory writing, fantasy rehearsal and ‘howling’ threats with little evidence of lethality. Simply stated: How does someone conducting a threat assessment sort out who is frustrated and upset versus who is planning a violent attack?


Pre-Conference 2: The Dirty Dozen (DD-12): Identifying Twelve Risk Factors for Sexual Assault, Stalking and Intimate Partner Violence
Presented by Amy Murphy, Ph.D., Dean of Students and Managing Director for the Center for Campus Life at Texas Tech University, NaBITA Advisory Board member; and Brian Van Brunt, Ed.D., 2015 NaBITA President; Senior Executive Vice President for Professional Program Development, The NCHERM Group, LLC

We spend a good deal of time responding to and developing educational programming to prevent sexual violence on campus, but what do we really know about the underlying risk factors that contribute to these problems on campus? Join the presenters as they share their research related to the 12 risk factors that contribute to sexual violence on campus.


Campus Behavioral Intervention Teams have a clear responsibility to recognize these risk factors to better prevent sexual violence on campus. The identifying risk factors will provide participants with a better understanding of the contributing influences to sexual violence through case examples, news stories and interactive conversations.  Understanding these risk factors will provide administrators, conduct officers, law enforcement, prevention advocates and counselors insight into preventative education and better informed policy and procedures to reduce sexual assault in the college and university setting.


Register online.
Download a registration form to pay via cheque.

Click here for more information on the 7th Annual NaBITA Conference.


Hosting a NaBITA Training Event


If your campus is interested in learning more about hosting a NaBITA training event or need information on additional training opportunities from our organization, please email Alisha DiGiandomenico, Assistant Vice President for Client Relations, or call at (610) 644-3387.


Should your campus/school/organization look to host an on-campus, public training event, NaBITA is currently collecting Request for Proposals for campus host sites for the 2016 calendar year.


For more information, click here.


A Window Into BIT

BIT Meeting Simulation and Training
Window Into Bit


A Window Into BIT is a video-based training tool to enhance campus BIT and student of concern team professional development. Watch national behavioral intervention team experts and campus practitioners model a BIT meeting as they role-play key team roles. The one-hour video comes with a detailed transcript, sample documentation from the meeting, and discussion questions for your team to use as a training tool to better understand how to develop and improve BIT meetings.


What does a Behavioral Intervention Team meeting actually look like? How do counseling, conduct and residential life talk together about cases? How is the NaBITA rubric used in a meeting? When should an assessment be required? At what point should the SIVRA-35 or other tools be utilized? How are action plans developed? In what order are cases discussed? How is documentation handled? How are conflicts between departments resolved?


Watch how team members communicate with each other and put the NaBITA threat assessment tool to use in rating over a dozen varied cases. Learn how to attend to parental notification, apply OCR guidance, the ADA and Title IX to cases. Watch how the experts model interactions designed to reduce silos while building connection between the varied departments in the simulation. Listen to the discussions around mandated assessment, how counseling works with conduct, and how the BIT chair keeps the team focused and on task.


To view the 10-minute sample preview and for more information about ordering A Window Into BIT for $299.99, please click here.


Maintain Certification with the Continuing Certification Credit (CCC) Program

Has your BIT been certified by NaBITA? Are you considering obtaining these certifications? Do you benefit from ongoing professional development from The NCHERM Group? If so, the CCC program is for you. The NCHERM Group heard your requests to update and renew your certifications online, and is proud to offer an online professional development platform called the Continuing Certification Credit (CCC) program.

Who can earn CCCs? Our CCC program allows clients of The NCHERM Group, including those certified by NaBITA, to track, maintain and extend their professional development through our programs. CCCs are a cost-effective way to stay current and maintain your certification from the nation’s leader in higher education risk management.


Learn about our program here.

NCHERM Group Online TrainingsNCHERM Group Online Trainings

The NCHERM Group Online Trainings is an endeavor to provide quality, distance learning education and discussion opportunities to colleges and universities across the country and around the world.

Bringing experts from numerous fields, The NCHERM Group and its affiliated associations, SCOPE, ATIXA and NaBITA, will bring you quality programs that address the most pressing needs in threat assessment, prevention education, sexual assault prevention, higher education legal issues, administrative best practices and risk management.

Upcoming NCHERM Group Online Trainings Sponsored by NaBITA


Fall 2013, Spring, Summer and Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 Online Training Recordings Available for Purchase here


Looking for more topics? Click here for a list of upcoming Webinar Collaborations presented by The NCHERM Group experts, sponsored by Innovative Educators.

Resources Available for Purchase


Mental Health Cover_final Oct 2013book on BITA Faculty Guide to Addressing Disruptive and Dangerous BehaviorVanBruntHarmOtherscvr jpgEnding Campus Violence Book Cover


Links to Relevant Articles


First-of-a-kind Study Shows College Students Often Start Using Substances During Summer


Shootings and Threats on Campuses


Armed Teen Holds Hostages Inside West Virginia High School


After Shooting, Alleged Gunman Details Grievances in 'Suicide Notes'


Fatal Shooting by Campus Cop Prompts Colleges' Reviews


Covering Criminal Suspects Who Seek Media Attention


Upcoming Webcast: Developing a Self-Harm Compliance Protocol

Job Board

NaBITA has created a Job Board page on our website for you to share any BIT-related job openings on your campus. You can find this resource at Please email any position announcements to


Case Manager – California State University Monterey Bay

Membership Renewal Reminder

If your NaBITA membership expires in July, August or September, now is the time to renew.  Renew your NaBITA campus membership or join for the very first time for as low as $639! Please download our membership renewal form here, or click here to renew online. 

For more information on NaBITA, visit or contact:

Amanda Tarczynski

1109 Lancaster Avenue  *new*
Berwyn, PA 19312
Phone: 484-321-3651
Fax: 610-993-0228