Commit and Act: Bringing Functional Assessment to Prosocial

CE Hours available ( How do I get my CE? )
Stuart Libman, MD Consultant, executive coach, and Peer Reviewed ACT Trainer

About This Course

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Prosocial is the first change method based on Evolutionary Science that enhances cooperation and collaboration for groups of all types and sizes and is effective at a global scale. (

The essential feature of Evolutionary Science is the process of variation, selection and retention in specified contexts. The Prosocial approach to organizations seeks to create evolutionary change at both individual and group levels by integrating Acceptance and Commitment Training (ACT) with the Core Design Principles (CDP’s) of Successful Organizations for which Dr. Elinor Ostrom won the 2009 Nobel Prize in Economics. ACT provides behavior analytic skill training towards increasing psychological flexibility, that is, our ability to remain oriented to pursuing a valued life course even when we are facing adverse contingencies. The CDP’s provide guidance in helping organizations function with clarity of purpose, fairness, and contextual sensitivity. Both ACT and the CDP’s serve to increase behavioral options that can be selected by the individual’s values or the organization’s purpose and then retained by the effects of positively reinforcing accomplishments.

The ACT Matrix (“Matrix’ing”) is a diagrammatic, four-quadrant tool used in Prosocial to determine when and how individuals and organizations are behaviorally moving towards engaging in valued pursuits in contrast with moving away from distressing situations. At a deeper level of understanding, Matrix’ing also can be seen as a behavior analytic procedure for assessing the function or purpose of behavior at both individual and organizational levels. Clarifying function facilitates the creation of new behavioral variations upon which the evolutionary processes of selection and retention can further operate.

In this training, Prosocial will be introduced in the form of the ACT Matrix and Ostrom’s Core Design Principles. Emphasis will be placed upon procedurally assessing the function of behavior at both individual and organizational levels. Given the verbal nature of both the behaviors in question and the CDP’s, the relevance of Relational Frame Theory to the process of functional assessment also will be addressed during this training.

Commit and Act is a non-governmental organization working to bring psychotherapeutic support to communities in need in Sierra Leone, Uganda, and Liberia. Their goal is to build a renewed sense of trust in the people they work with. To help individuals find the courage to rebuild their lives according to their own vision and values. Their local professional therapists counsel individuals and community groups.

PraxisCET is proud to help support this work. Proceeds from this presentation will go directly to Commit and Act, providing vital funding for the health and education services they provide in Sierra Leone and elsewhere.


March 11, 2021, 2 PM—4 PM EST

Learning Objectives

Participants will be able to:
  1. Describe how “Matrix’ing” can be procedurally implemented to accomplish functional assessment with individuals.
  2. Explain the changes necessary for “Matrix’ing” with groups.
  3. Specify how Ostrom’s Core Design Principles can be procedurally incorporated into “Matrix’ing Prosocially” with organizations.

Continuing Education

Please review complete CE and conflict-of-interest disclosure information prior to registering. This course is jointly sponsored by Praxis CET and Institute for Better Health (IBH) and is approved for 2 CE Hours by the following:

  • BACB – Behavior Analysts
  • NBCC – National Counselors
  • NAADAC – Drug & Alcohol Counselors
  • WESPSB – Educators
  • APA - Psychologist: Institute for Better Health, Inc is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to offer continuing education for psychologists. Institute for Better Health, Inc maintains responsibility for the program and its content.
  • NY State – Counselors, Psychologists, and Social Workers




Behavior analysts and other mental health professionals interested in learning (more) about ACT, RFT, and Prosocial. Graduate students, coaches, teachers, and therapists with interests in Organizational Behavior Management (OBM) and consultation might find this training to be of particular value. This is for all levels beginner-advanced

Recommended Reading

Atkins, P.W.B., Wilson, D.S., & Hayes, S.C. (2019). Prosocial: Using evolutionary science to build productive, equitable and collaborative groups. Oakland: New Harbinger.


Wilson, D.S., Hayes, S.C., Biglan, A., & Embry, D.D. (2014). Evolving the future: Toward a science of intentional change. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 37: 395-460.

Wilson, D.S., Kaufman, R.A., & Purdy, M.S. (2011). A program for at-risk high school students informed by evolution science. PLoS ONE 6(11): e27826.

Hayes, S.C., Hofmann, S.G. & Stanton, C.E. (2020). Process-based functional analysis can help behavioral science step up to novel challenges: COVID-19 as an example. Journal of Contextual Behavioral Science 18: 128-145.

Refund and Cancellation Policy

We understand, sometimes things come up!

Praxis will offer a full refund to registrants of both live and live-online trainings who cancel their registration up to 14 days before the course or workshop start date, minus an administrative processing fee of $30 for a 2-day workshop or online course, and a $50 fee for a 4-day workshop. If cancelled within 14 days, no refund will be issued, however, a credit for the same amount will be applied toward another learning product, which expires within 1 year. Please contact us at to cancel a registration.