April 12-13, 2024
Renaissance Atlanta Waverly Hotel & Convention Center
Atlanta, GA

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What’s your specialty as a counselor? Your area of expertise?

For years, the Christian counseling movement has been shifting to a specialization focus with counselors leading the way in treating and educating others on specialized topics such as Sex Addiction, Grief and Loss, Eating Disorders, Marital Therapy, Counseling with Adolescents, Mood Disorders, and more….

In step with this trend, the AACC has been working to bring you some of the best counselor specialization training in the world.

Attendees will receive:
12 hours “Specialization” Intensive Training, featuring some of the world’s leading Christian counseling educators and clinicians Additional time for case discussions, questions and answers, and opportunities to network with instructors and colleagues Comprehensive notebook 12 hours of Continuing Education Credit A Professional Specialization Certificate of Completion suitable for framing from the AACC and Light University Enroll now for the best savings we have to offer!

God is going to do great things through this Specialization Intensive Training Event!


Tim Clinton, Ed.D., LPC, LMFT
President, American Association of Christian Counselors

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Attachment Based Intervention Specialist (ABIS), Level 1

Attachment theory holds tremendous potential in the case of conceptualization and treatment of various forms of psychopathology, including childhood problems, relationship conflicts, chronic depression, anxiety disorders, and more. This intensive will explore the inherent power of the therapeutic relationship to literally change the brain’s chemistry, structure, and function. The role of various neurobiological systems will be identified, including the brainstem and vagal tone, sympathetic-parasympathetic balance, the limbic system (amygdala, hippocampus and septum), the prefrontal cortex, left vs. right hemisphere activation, mirror neurons, neural integration, and relational neuroplasticity. “Secure Base” Psychotherapy offers an attachment-informed system for assessment and treatment through establishing a curative relationship, navigating treatment resistance, and healing attachment wounds. Attendees will learn how to accurately assess attachment, along with powerful, evidenced-based techniques, for processing strong attachment-related emotions, revising core attachment beliefs, developing emotion regulation and interpersonal effectiveness skills, breaking chronic patterns of withdrawal, isolation, hostility and addictions, and generalizing treatment results to situations and relationships outside of therapy. Role-plays and case studies will be used throughout. Specific attention will be given to Christian integration, as well as pertinent multicultural and ethical guidelines.

Learning Objectives

Study foundational principles of attachment theory through the lens of the secure base system, including exploration, threat, attachment emotions (intimacy, anger, anxiety, depression and grief), proximity seeking, signaling, and the safe haven experience

Identify the core features of interpersonal neurobiology, including Siegel’s triangle of well-being (mind, brain and relationships), and understand brain basics and how various neurobiological systems are activated and changed in the context of restorative relationships

Be able to articulate each attachment style, their development across the lifespan, and how they influence emotion regulation, self-worth maintenance, resilience, risk, parenting, romantic intimacy, spiritual growth, and risk and resilience to various forms of psychopathology

Name and describe the main tenants of “Secure Base” Psychotherapy, an integrated approach for assessing attachment and linking the assessment results to an integrated, attachment-informed, case-formulation system

Explore and critique core therapeutic relationship techniques for skillfully establishing and maintaining a strong, curative secure-base therapy relationship, and learn the crucial skills needed to detect and manage treatment resistance and potential therapy wounds

Adapt six, core, evidenced-based therapy strategies (including more than a dozen specific techniques) within an attachment-informed perspective to common clinical cases, including depression, anxiety, trauma, addiction and disruptive mood dysregulation

Friday 4/12 8:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.

ABIS 101: The Essence of Attachment Theory: Interpersonal Neurobiology and the Secure Base System — Tim Clinton, Ed.D.

ABIS 102: An Integrated Assessment Model: Linking Attachment to Case Formulation and Evidence-based Treatment Strategies — Tim Clinton, Ed.D.

Friday 4/12 1:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.

ABIS 103: The Therapeutic Relationship and Attachment Wound Re-enactment: Essential Skills for Establishing and Maintaining a Secure Base — Gary Sibcy, Ph.D.

ABIS 104: Essential Skills for Revising the Attachment Belief System — Gary Sibcy, Ph.D.

ABIS 105: Case Studies of Evidence-based Therapeutic Strategies: Applying Attachment Theory to the Treatment of Childhood Mood Dysregulation and Disruptive Behavior – Gary Sibcy, Ph.D.

Saturday 4/13 8:30 a.m. – 11:45 p.m.

ABIS 106: The Attachment Factor: How Relationships Can Help, Hurt, and Heal in Trauma — Shannae Anderson, Ph.D.
ABIS 107: I Hate You, Don't Leave Me: Attachment and Personality Disorders — Shannae Anderson, Ph.D.

Saturday 4/13 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

ABIS 108: God Attachment and Spiritual Doubt: How Faith Can Grow Through Adversity — Mercy Connors, Ph.D.

Saturday 4/13 3:15 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.

ABIS 109: Love and Marriage: A Model for Understanding and Intervention with Empty, Loveless, and Conflicted Relationships — Tim Clinton, Ed.D.

ABIS 110: Case Studies of Evidence-based Therapeutic Strategies: Applying Attachment Theory to the Treatment of Depression, Anxiety, and Addiction — Gary Sibcy, Ph.D.

Tim Clinton, Ed.D., LPC, LMFT, is President of the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC), the largest and most diverse Christian counseling association in the world. He also serves as Executive Director of the Global Center for Mental Health, Addiction, and Recovery and Professor Emeritus at Liberty University. For the past 7 years, Dr. Clinton extended his ministry as co-host of Dr. James Dobson’s Family Talk, heard on more than 1,400 radio outlets daily, and now hosts a weekend television program, “Sunday the Road Forward”, seen on Real America’s Voice News streaming service and numerous platforms. Licensed as a professional counselor and as a marriage and family therapist, Dr. Clinton is recognized as a world leader on mental health and relationship issues and spends much of his time working with Christian leaders and professional athletes. Recently, Dr. Clinton and his son, Zach, launched a new daily meditative prayer podcast on pray.com for mental health and relationships with nearly 5 million downloads in the first 5 months and together they host a new radio broadcast and podcast entitled “Life, Love, Faith, & Family.” Dr. Clinton has authored or edited nearly 30 books, including Take It Back: Reclaiming Biblical Masculinity: The Heart & Strength of Being a Man, and his latest, Focus on the Future: Your Family, Your Faith, and Your Voice Matter Now More Than Ever. He has been married 43 years to his wife Julie, and together they have two children, Megan (married to Ben) and Zach (married to Evelyn), and two granddaughters, Olivia and Sophia, who have stolen their hearts.

Gary A. Sibcy II, Ph.D., is a professor of counselor education and supervision and he is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist who has educated, trained, and supervised counselors for over 15 years. Dr. Sibcy has a broad range of research and clinical interests, including the assessment and treatment of childhood disorders, anxiety and trauma disorders, and personality disorders. He also has an interest in the integration of religious beliefs in clinical practice. His current research interests focus on developing and disseminating empirically supported treatments for both children and adults. Dr. Sibcy writes, speaks, and consults nationally and internationally.

Dr. Shannae Anderson is a clinical and forensic psychologist in California and Virginia. She earned her PhD from the University of Southern California and has been in private practice for 25 years where she specializes in complex trauma and PTSD, addictions, eating disorders, self-harm, and borderline personality disorder. She studied under Dr. Dan Siegel for numerous years, where she became an Interpersonal Neurobiology trained teacher. She is currently the Clinical Director of a chemical dependency treatment center in California, the Director of Psychology and the Co-Director of Ethics and Advocacy at AACC, and Adjunct Faculty at Liberty University in the doctoral program for clinical psychology. She is a noted speaker and has her first book coming out soon.

Dr. Mercy Connors, earned her doctoral degree in Professional Counseling from Liberty University and is a Licensed Professional Counselor for the state of Virginia. Dr. Connors is the Director of Program Development and Professional Relations with AACC. She is happily married to Jesse Connors, Founder of TrueLife.org, and has three children and one waiting for them in heaven.

Limited Seating — Register today!
Super Early Bird Deadline March 15, 2024
AACC Members $199 • Non-Members $249
(At-the-Door: AACC Members $349 • Non-Members $399)

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