Fit Founding Directors
Dr. Kimberly Nix Berens
Kimberly Nix Berens, Ph.D., is the Founding Director of Fit Learning and Regional Director of Fit Learning – TriState. She is the co-creator of a powerful system of instruction stemming from the behavioral, learning, and cognitive sciences. This unique approach has transformed the learning abilities of a wide range of children, including those who are struggling, average, gifted, or learning disabled. Her learning programs effectively target such essential areas as early learning skills, basic classroom readiness, phonemic awareness, reading fluency, comprehension, inferential language, basic and advanced mathematics, grammar, and expressive writing. From her early beginnings in a broom closet at the University of Nevada – Reno, she has helped grow Fit Learning to an organization with over 20 locations worldwide. She is highly recognized in her field and has been invited to speak regarding her expertise in science-based approaches to instruction at many regional, national, and international conferences. Following an appointment by Governor Jim Gibbons, Dr. Berens served on the Nevada State Board of Psychological Examiners, where she assisted in establishing best practice guidelines for practitioners. Her system of instruction has consistently produced one year’s growth in 40 hours of training with thousands of children worldwide.
Dr. Nicholas Miller Berens
Nicholas M. Berens, Ph.D. – Dr. Berens received his Ph.D. in behavior analysis from the University of Nevada under the supervision of Dr. Steven Hayes. He has served on several professional boards including the Standard Celeration Society, Nevada Association for Behavior Analysis, and the Association for Contextual Behavioral Science’s education special interest group. Berens is an experienced applied researcher and has published and presented in the areas of core behavioral process related to language and development, the merits of the scientist practitioner model, Relational Frame Theory, Precision Teaching, and program evaluation. He has spent the last 10 years researching and developing the Fit Learning system of instruction. This system targets areas such as basic classroom readiness, core processing speed, phonemic awareness, reading fluency, reading comprehension, language-based comprehension, basic and advanced mathematics, grammar, expressive writing, logic, problem solving, and Executive Functioning. He and the Fit Learning team have implemented the system with over 1,000 children ages 3-18 years old. These children have presented with a variety of skill levels and diagnoses including children diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, learning disabilities including AD/HD, Dyslexia, Dygraphia, Dyscalcula, Auditory Processing Disorder, Non-Verbal Learning Disorder, and struggling learners, as well as gifted students. The Fit Learning system has consistently been shown to produce one year’s growth in 8-weeks.
Dr. Kendra Brooks Newsome
Dr. Kendra Newsome earned her PhD in 2010 from the University of Nevada, Reno. She is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA-D) and a Licensed Behavior Analyst in the state of Nevada. She has served as the President for the Nevada Association for Behavior Analysis and is a former Co-President of the Standard Celeration Society. Dr. Newsome is a Founding Director and Owner of Fit Learning, Reno – a Precision Teaching Learning Laboratory that has served over 1,400 families since 2004. Dr. Newsome is a regular contributor to scientific and professional communities on learning science and evidence-based instruction. She and her colleagues have pursued inquiries into the role of language and relational flexibility in the establishment of complex academic repertoires. Her research initiatives include applications of Relational Frame Theory to education, the incorporation of Precision Teaching into Response to Intervention frameworks, and contextual analyses in clinical settings through the use of the Standard Celeration Chart. Dr. Newsome has given numerous invited presentations and lectures on science-based approaches to education and serves as a consultant to individuals practicing Precision Teaching in the academic domain. Her professional actions are guided by the commitment to transform educational practices in the world so that all students have the opportunity to develop the kinds of skills and expertise that will allow them to make a difference in their communities and beyond.
Dr. Donny Newsome
Dr. Donny Newsome earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Mississippi and his PhD from the University of Nevada, Reno. Dr. Donny is a Director at Fit Learning, a precision teaching laboratory. Dr. Newsome is also a former Co-President of the Standard Celeration Society (SCS). As an Associate Consultant with Praxis2, he frequently provides advisement and educational services to global corporations in the energy industry. His research initiatives have focused on organizational behavior and educational technologies across various business sectors, including public utilities, universities, school districts, Fortune 100 companies, and community service providers. As a consultant and educator, he has been invited to share his expertise via presentations, workshops, and university courses on a wide variety of socially relevant topics to a diversity of professional audiences. He has successfully developed and supervised dozens of teams of practitioners, researchers, community groups, and organizational initiatives. The overarching value guiding Dr. Newsome’s work is contributing to the transformation of human well-being through the science of teaching and learning.