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MIM (Marschak Interaction Method) Assessment 

The MIM is a structured technique for observing and assessing the overall quality and nature of relationships between caregivers and child. It consists of a series of simple games designed to elicit behaviours in four primary dimensions in order to evaluate the caregivers’ capacity to and the child’s ability to respond to the caregivers’ efforts: 


  • Set limits and provide an appropriately ordered environment (Structure) 

  • Engage the child in interaction while being attuned to the child’s state (Engagement) 

  • Meet the child’s needs for attention, soothing and care (Nurture) 

  • Support and encourage the child’s efforts to achieve at a developmentally appropriate level (Challenge) 


The MIM takes from 30 to 60 minutes . There are sets of games/activities  designed to be used in each of four age groups: infant, toddler, pre-school/school age, and adolescent. Materials needed to perform the tasks are simple and readily available. 

In addition to allowing a close look at problem areas in the relationship, the MIM provides a unique opportunity for observing the strengths of both adult and child and of their relationship. It is, therefore, a valuable tool in planning for therapeutic interventions and in determining how to help families strengthen their relationships. The description of the relationship that results from this observation is a valuable aid in determining the appropriateness of custody arrangements, reunification, foster placement and/or adoption. 

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