Discrete DT Trainer

SKU: DT-Trainer

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Discrete DT Trainer

Downloadable/Printable DT Trainer Overview

You will find the DT Trainer to be a robust independent tutor for your child or students. You will be happy to see that the product is designed to be an amazing value. This is a large effective product for a very reasonable price. We charge enough to keep evolving and expanding the product without charging so much that it is not affordable.

The DT Trainer was created based on methods developed to educate our most difficult to educate individuals: children with autism. However, the DT Trainer’s configurability also makes it beneficial for children with other learning disabilities, and even with typically developing but young children. Behavioral methods have been proven to be effective for teaching individuals including those with autism.

The software motivates individuals to perform tasks which they may not want to learn or may find difficult to learn. There are hundreds of colorful, interesting, and fun reinforcers to pick from which engage even difficult to motivate individuals. You can even add your own reinforcers! The DT Trainer breaks down learning into the appropriate steps for low functioning to high functioning students. The DT Trainer is especially designed for learners that have one or more of the following


developmentally between the ages 2-9 years (limitation of current content)
easily distracted or overloaded
not well self directed or motivated
have difficulty following directions
require moderate to substantial repetition
need maintenance of previously learned materials

Designed for Independent Use

Even individuals that require one-on-one teaching can usually become independent learners on the DT Trainer.
eliminates or reduces the cost or time of a one-on-one teacher, therapist, or parent while the child is using the software allows parents and teachers to work on topics the DT Trainer can not teach, help generalize, or maintain
frees parents and teachers to attend to other responsibilities while the child is engaged in a productive educational activity

Note: Low functioning or young users may need a touch screen or switch input device.

Individualized Instruction

The DT Trainer is highly adjustable to accommodate the needs of the individual learner and the preferences of the teacher or parent. The configurability within the DT Trainer allows the user to adapt the software to accommodate the needs of individuals ranging from low functioning or early learners to typically developing, but young learners.

Broad Scope of Content Programs

The DT Trainer currently contains hundreds of content programs, and even more programs are in development.

Skill Areas: Matching, Identification, Counting, Phonics, Classification, Sequencing, Spatial Relations, Math, Time, Money, Word Analysis, Wh Questions, Word Recognition

Example Programs: objects, colors, numbers, shapes, body parts, addition, money counting, time recognition, months, survival words, synonyms, and math word problems

Supports Variety of Input Devices

The DT Trainer supports mouse, touch screen, double switch, and single switch. These input devices help facilitate a wide range of student abilities.

Collects Data and Provides Reports

The DT Trainer collects data on each trial. Reports can be used for evaluating the learner’s progress and performance, and to modify their programs.

Great Reinforcers

The DT Trainer is installed with hundreds of multimedia reinforcers to motivate the student. Reinforcers include basic cause and effect, games and interactive activities, stimulating visuals, music, animations, and movie clips. The program also allows you to add your own reinforcers such as movies, games, or even web pages. For example, it is easy to add a movie of a child doing a favorite activity. This reinforcer can be very powerful for a young or low functioning individual. The reinforcement rate is adjustable to provide the appropriate level of reinforcement, and the reinforcers can be changed periodically to keep the program interesting. Many of the cause and effect reinforcers can be used to build basic mouse or touch screen skills, and there is even a reinforce-only mode for very young children or very low functioning individuals to help build basic interactions with the computer. There is an impressive set of reinforcers already in the product, and AES is expanding the set to continue providing the most powerful reinforcement system available!

Additional Benefits for Low Functioning Students

Besides the primary benefit of learning the topics of the various content programs, other possible benefits are:

helps generalize or maintain information converts unproductive or self-stim time into productively spent time
improves self esteem – child realizes that he can learn on his own
increases ability to stay on task
Complements Variety of Classrooms & Settings

The DT Trainer complements a variety of school & home educational programs

Autism classes (ABA – DT & VB, TEACCH, and eclectic)
Self contained Intellectual Disabilities classes
Home based ABA – DT & VB and eclectic programs
At Risk 4 year old preschool
Regular education kindergarten and preschool classes
The DT Trainer comes with training videos and there are also prerecorded and live web based training sessions available.

key features and benefits

Affordable: Priced as a cost effective solution for a wide range of students.
Designed for Autism but appropriate for students or adults developmentally from 2 to 9 years old.
Based on well researched methods for teaching individuals with autism and other learning disabilities.
Content Programs menu has hundreds of curriculum programs for teachers to choose from for their students. Skill levels range from basic early learning (colors, shapes, counting, body parts, receptive vocabulary) to higher level skills (analogies, synonyms, multiplication, sight words, math word problems).

Photo icons (images of real objects with backgrounds removed) are used to facilitate generalization of skills. The DTT is an ageless program for learners of all ages because the images are not babyish or cartoonish, but look very real.

Reinforcers include hundreds of motivating cause-effect items, video clips, arts & graphics, and age-appropriate-looking choices for older students (Whack-an-Alien, puzzles, SuperBlinky). You can add your own digital movie clips, photos, and websites to customize your reinforcers, too!

Mouse Skills can be developed and strengthened through many of the reinforcers such as Puzzles, Flood Fill, Whack-An-Alien, and many more.

Test/Assessment feature enables teachers to easily periodically test specific programs that will provide date, time, %correct, and identifies each item as correct/incorrect. It’s a powerful tool for teachers to print for parents, especially when they’ve aligned the program choices with standards & IEP objectives. The DT Trainer also automatically tracks data in a variety of formats to provide student performance details.
Students work independently without adult assistance. The DTT is essentially an errorless learning program that moves a student forward and back based on his responses. Incorrect responses are never inadvertently reinforced, the correct answer is always simply stated, and the student is given opportunity to try again until he has success.

The DTT is highly configurable, allowing the teacher to customize each student’s program to align with IEP objectives, state standards, and individual learning needs.

The DTT program can be easily incorporated into a daily classroom or home routine as a computer station, as a block on a visual schedule, or as a self-selected learning or center activity. It will not add more work to the teacher’s plate, but will make her life easier by tracking data, providing specific direct instruction, and freeing up classroom staff for other tasks.

Works with mouse, touch screen, single & double switch (scan rate, frequency, and color box can be configured.) The range of input devices supports use with very developmentally young or delayed individuals, students with CP or cognitive disabilities, or higher level and even typical students.

Content Programs in the DT Trainer

DT Trainer Content by Developmental Level/Subject
DT Trainer Content List
DT Trainer Content List with Description
DT Trainer Content List

Updates Report Tool

The following tool displays new and updated activities that have been released after the expiration of your updates and support agreement.

Updates Report Tool

DT Trainer – Reinforcers

The DT Trainer is installed with hundreds of multimedia reinforcers to motivate the student. Reinforcers include basic cause and effect, games and interactive activities, stimulating visuals, music, animations, and movie clips. The program also allows you to add your own reinforcers such as movies, games, or even web pages. For example, it is easy to add a movie of a child doing a favorite activity. This reinforcer can be very powerful for a young or low functioning individual. The reinforcement rate is adjustable to provide the appropriate level of reinforcement, and the reinforcers can be changed periodically to keep the program interesting. Many of the cause and effect reinforcers can be used to build basic mouse or touch screen skills, and there is even a reinforce-only mode for very young children or very low functioning individuals to help build basic interactions with the computer. There is an impressive set of reinforcers already in the product, and AES is expanding the set to continue providing the most powerful reinforcement system available!

“Smart” Reinforcers!

These reinforcers are configurable for each student, and save the student’s progress between sessions of the reinforcer.
SuperBlinky: The student guides “Blinky” through over 20 levels in an attempt to collect all the gold coins.
SuperPop: The student must pop all the circles on the screen. The number and motion of the circles is increased with each level.
SuperPong: Just like the classic arcade game! The student controls a paddle and attempts to block the ball from leaving one side of the screen. With each level completed, the speed of the game is slightly increased.

Activities – Arts and Graphics

Epicycloids, Flood Fill Coloring, Image Building (Flower Garden, Flower Bed, Outer Space, Rubber Stamp, The Desert), Paintbrush Coloring, Scribbling (B&W, Color)

Activities – Basic Cause/Effect
Animal Noises, Chase, Dancing Bees, Draw Bots, Eyes Chase Cursor, Eyes Track Cursor, Follower (I & II), Grid Block, Kaleidoscope, Liner, Lines, Mouse Music, Pops, Puff of Smoke, Quads, Space Flight, Sparkler, Triangles, UFO’s, U-Weave, Weave, Zen

Activities – Intermediate Cause/Effect
Alien Invaders, Wave Play

Activities – Basic Problem Solving
Boy Doll, Girl Doll, Christmas Tree, Veggie Head

Activities – Controls
Circling Dots

Activities – Eye-Hand Coordination
Circle Pop, Crazy Dots, Crazy Stars, Super Pop, Fireworks

Activities – Games
Jigsaw Puzzles, Matching, Super Blinky, Super Pong, Whack-an-alien, Whack-a-spider

Activities – Music
Player Piano (I & II)

Non-Interactive – High Stimulation
Crystal, Electric Mandala, SpyderWyre, Tubeulent, TwiStar, Whirlwinds

Non-Interactive – Math Graphics

Non-Interactive – Tunnels
Dot Tunnel, Web Tunnel

Non-Interactive – Miscellaneous
Dancing Trapezoids, MirroSphere
Sounds – Children’s Songs
Baa Baa Black Sheep, Billy Boy, Hay Diddle Diddle, Itsy Bitsy Spider, Mary Had a Little Lamb, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Videos – Animation
Creatures, Explosions, EyeCandy, People, Space, Spinning, Terrains, Water Scenes

Videos – Movies
Animals, Sports, Transportation, Water, Weather


What does the “DT” in “DT Trainer” stand for?

DT stands for Discrete Trial, which is the primary teaching method in a number of behaviorally-based interventions used in teaching children with autism. Discrete Trial Training is used with Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapies.

In DT Training, tasks are broken down into short, simple tasks. A discrete trial is a single cycle of the instructional program. A particular trial may be repeated mulitple times, sometimes in succession, several times during the learning session until the item is mastered.

Using the DT Trainer, a learner is able to work independently and target skills selected for her specific needs. The DT Trainer is an affordable, very effective learning tool that allows a child to learn needed skills without an adult’s direct assistance.

Is the DT Trainer based on Research?

Yes! The DT Trainer (DTT) is based on methods evolved by research and practice over decades. Computers are now powerful and cheap enough to make what has been done in labs accessible for parents and educators. From those foundations, the DT Trainer is being evolved by feedback from researchers, academics, ABA professionals, speech & language pathologists, teachers, and parents. Computers are a natural fit for ABA methods since computers can deliver fantastic reinforcement, are great at collecting and calculating data, can modify behavior based on settings and data, are tireless, and have infinite patience. Computers can mimic various styles of ABA, and can be adjusted for teaching preferences and learning needs. Since ABA methods use data to determine progress and adjust teaching accordingly, there is a record of progress when implemented by people or computers. By simply looking at the data, the teacher can easily determine if each specific student is progressing with the program. The benefits for the student can be initial learning, increased fluency, generalization, and maintenance.

The preliminary results show the DTT not only doing what we expected but in some cases even doing much better than expected. For example we wound not expect the DTT to teach a student faster than 1-on-1 ABA with a trained person and we would not expect the DTT to teach a student where 1-on-1 ABA therapy had failed. We now believe that these results happen when a student is uncooperative or inhibited when working with a person but does not have the same barriers to learning when working with the computer even if both are using similar methods. User’s have also seen initially untrainable topics by people, taught on the DTT, and then using the images from the DTT to transfer the knowledge to performance with people.

There are various research projects seeking to quantify the observed benefits of the program. Some of the results from the first studies should be presented and published in 2005.

My computer skills are not good. Will I be able to use the DT Trainer?

Yes! The DT Trainer was designed to be easy to learn. There are some adjustments available that allow the system to be configured for a large range of students and for some students that have very specific learning needs. To help you, there are descriptions in the administration to teach you about the buttons and other controls. Also most settings have a default so you do not need to change them unless there is a specific reason for that student. We have a great manual, but since most people are not much for reading manuals, we have digital videos that also show you the DT Trainer.

The DT Trainer is not hard to learn, and for the relatively small amount of time you will spend on learning the product, the DT Trainer will pay back that time by being a virtual teacher for a large amount of content. Most students, even very low functioning ones, can learn to use the program independently so you will generally not have to sit with a student while he is using the program.

I have installed the Discrete Trial Trainer.  Now what do I do?

The best way to get started is to view our training videos. These videos are accessed from a desktop icon (from recent installation CDs) or from our web site at www.dttrainer.com/files/video/trainingvideos. The videos total about 1 hour, range from 30 seconds to 7 minutes, and have a browse menu and VCR style controls to allow you to skip around, pause, and play the videos. The videos will provide you with the background on the methods used and show you how to view all the content programs and reinforcers and how to create a student. Some users find the DT Trainer so easy to use that they did not need the training videos, but viewing the videos will quickly get you more proficient at using the software.

Once you have viewed the training videos, you will then use the DT Trainer administration to preview content programs and reinforcers and then create students. Once students are created on the system, then those students will be able to use the DT Trainer.

Do I need a touch screen?

Although a touch screen is not required for use with the DT Trainer, it is an excellent enabling device for people above the switch level but below a mouse. The most cost effective touch screen is one for a 15 inch monitor.

We are not doing a DT or ABA program. Can the DT Trainer help?

Yes! The DT Trainer (DTT) can be used for lead teaching, practice, generalization, or maintenance. For autistic individuals, the DTT has successfully been integrated into traditional ABA/DT, VB, TEACCH, and eclectic educational programs. In school districts, the DT Trainer is also used widely outside the autism spectrum with trainable, educable, and cognitively impaired students. There has also been some use with typically developing but young children.

We have made the DT Trainer configurable to accommodate the needs of a wide range of autistic children. We have extended that approach by incorporating universal design principles to support the low functioning child to a high functioning but young child.

Can the DTT help my non-verbal child?

Usually! The child or student does not have to have expressive language (speech) to use the DT Trainer. In fact the child does not have to have much receptive language either. The lower content programs specifically work on basic labeling and simple instructions. The DT Trainer primarily works on receptive language, early academics, and life skills. None of these program areas require expressive language.

Of course receptive language is needed for expressive language to develop and we do model a lot of spoken language through the DT Trainer. Occasionally, although not designed to initiate speech, some children will even speak when working with the DT Trainer. This behavior is probably because the trainer is not threatening to many children, whereas they find working with people intimidating.

As you know, however, every child is different and not all will respond to our software. This is part of the reason we offer the 30 day trial – so that you can try the software – the full software – with your child to verify he will benefit.

Do I need to register for the evaluation period?

The full DT Trainer will automatically run for 30 days without registration. You only need to register if you purchase the DT Trainer or need an extended evaluation period. If you need an extended amount of time to evaluate the product, please call 877-724-4922 and let us know how much more time you need. After the 30 day period, the product will continue to run except for direct instruction (version or later). You will be able to use unregistered (un-purchased) installations to learn the program or for support or assessment purposes.

When I purchase, will I get another CD?

The “trial” CD is a complete version so you do not need another CD. You will get 1 year of Maintenance and Updates so you will receive access to additional content programs, reinforcers, and features. You should periodically update to the latest release from www.dttrainer.com/updates.html.

Can more than one child use the home version?

The home version does not limit the number of students/children. There are usually one or sometimes two target children, but many parents let their other young children use the DTT. The program can be configured to benefit the siblings and they provide roll models for our target children. The home version license limits use to within the family and is not for situations like a group home.

What do I do after the trial period if I’m not interested?

If the DT Trainer is not currently appropriate for your child or students, please pass the CD on to someone you know who might benefit from using the DTT. The CD will install and run an unlimited number of 30 day trials on different computers.

If the DT Trainer did not meet your current needs, please feel free to provide us with feedback. For example, let us know if you need higher level content (give age or grade range), specific content, other features, and so on.

What is a “Bundle”?

We offer several bundles like the “Standard Institutional Bundle” and the “Standard Home Bundle”. A bundle consists of the software, accompanying printed and electronic materials, a license, upgrades, and support.  Contact us for more details.

Can I run the Discrete Trial Trainer on a Mac?

Currently the DT Trainer is only available for IBM compatibles. Fortunately, Macs and IBMs are no longer 2 or 3 thousand dollars and a box can be purchased for as little as $400 – $500. Businesses are currently buying 3 Gigahertz computers and giving away their old 600+ Megahertz systems (a good computer for our software).

Our revenues will dictate how quickly we will be able to do a Mac version. For now, school districts are generally running IBM compatibles, or are mixed. Some districts are strictly MAC but many are in the process of incorporating both.

To keep our prices low, we develop for the systems that most of the market have. The volume of potential customers with PCs allows us to charge just $149 for home and $349 for a school computer. Contact us for help.  We offer HP, and Lenovo, and all other major brands.

DT Trainer is compatible with the following operating systems

Microsoft Windows XP, Vista, 7 (Note: We have limited support for Windows 95, and Windows NT is not supported)

The hardware minimum requirements are

IBM compatible PC
CD or DVD ROM drive
700 MB free hard drive space, (1 GB preferred)
Multimedia system with good audio
At least 1GB of RAM

Related Notes

Various components affect overall system performance. You may need to judge acceptable performance for your students and their tolerance for system delays. Certain higher level graphics programs and reinforcers may require a faster processor (~1GHz), such as the “SkipCounting By…” programs and “CtsTo..Coins” programs, as well as reinforcers such as “Super Blinky”.

A 15″ or 17″ monitor is recommended if you need a touch screen (touch screens for 17″ monitors are more expensive than 15″, and 21″ touch screens cost significantly more).

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