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Active Assailant Training

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DPrep Safety’s Mindset active assailant prevention and response training blends the leading research in psychology, law enforcement, and military theory with our instructor’s practice and experience to emphasize early preparation prior to an attack. Through a trauma-informed approach to instructional design, we educate teachers, administrators, and other employees to increases awareness of their surroundings. This awareness improves reaction time and empowers community members to act rather than becoming frozen by fear or indecision. Mindset helps participants choose the best course of action, leading to a better chance of survival. This page contains supplemental materials for those who have attended the training. Interested in training? Contact

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Mindset Situational Awareness PDF
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Mindset Run, Hide. Fight
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Any program that keeps people safe in an active assailant scenario must be built on the core theories from the worlds of criminology, psychology, law enforcement and military engagement. Theories covered in the program include:

  • Behavioral Threat Assessment. Dr. Brian Van Brunt's book, Harm to Others, summarizes the approach behaviors as they related to targeted, predatory and instrumental violence. Bringing together leading theorists in behavioral threat assessment, this book examines what to attend to prior to a targeted attack on a school, workplace, or house of worship.

  • The Bulletproof Mind. Lt. Dave Grossman reviews the practical application of the body under stress in his book The Bullet Proof Mind. Dr. Hart continues this discussion in his book Adrenaline and Stress to help readers understanding how the body reacts under stress and how to become aware of these limitations.

  • Active Shooter Events and Response. The research from the ALERT center is well summarized in Blair, Nichols, Burns and Curnutt’s book, Active Shooter Events and Response. Looking at law enforcement response to active shooting events provides important details and insights for those community members, students, faculty and employees who find themselves under attack.

  • The Gift of Fear. Gavin de Becker’s book, The Gift of Fear: Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence, describes the importance of situational awareness and improving the speed and reaction time when violence is about to occur. Fear is seen as an essential tool in our survival of a critical incident. Fear, when directed away from worry, becomes the preparation that increases the safety of those at risk.


  • Vertical Emergency Management. This process teaches the importance of everyone in a school, college, or workplace setting having the knowledge, training, and skills to respond in an emergency scenario. Having a single person or inaccessible “red binder” silos critical response information and limits the ability to have a timely response. Discussed in emergency medical care, both National Incident Management System (NIMS), and Incident Command System (ICS) teach these concepts through Homeland Security.

  • Survival Arc. Amanda Ripley introduced the survival arc concept in her book, The Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes. The concept is broken down into three elements: denial, deliberation, and decisive action. By helping those under an active threat move past denial more quickly, we help them to reduce deliberation time when choosing a course of action and ultimately move them toward a decisive action more quickly.​

  • Left of Bang. Left of Bang was written by Patrick Van Horne and Jason Riley and teaches the importance of attending to the moments before something really bad happens. These concepts combine well with the survival arc and OODA loop to improve situational awareness and increase the drive to direct and decisive actions.​

  • O.O.D.A Loop. This approach to observation and response, observe, orient, decide, act, was first developed by Colonel John Boyd and has been applied to numerous systems problems in order to improve the speed and reaction during critical incidents. The recent book Beyond OODA: Developing the Orientation for Deception, Conflict and Violence was written by Varg Freeborn outlines the various applications of Boyd’s theory.​

The Mindset Team
Brian Van Brunt, EdD

Brian Van Brunt, EdD

Bethany Smith

Bethany Smith

Joseph Dooley

Joseph Dooley

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor

Chris Usher

Chris Usher

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