Discrete Trial Teaching Fact Sheet
Discrete trial teaching (DTT) is a one-to-one instructional approach used to teach skills in a planned, controlled, and systematic manner. DTT is characterized by repeated, or massed, trials that have a definite beginning and end. Within DTT, the use of antecedents and consequences
is carefully planned and implemented. The instructional trial begins when the adult presents a clear direction or stimulus, which elicits a target behavior. Positive praise and/or tangible rewards are used to reinforce desired skills or behaviors. Data collection is an important part of DTT as it provides teachers/practitioners with information about beginning skill level, progress and chal- lenges, skill acquisition and maintenance, and generalization of learned skills or behaviors. Other practices that are used in DTT include task analysis, prompting, time delay, and reinforcement.
DTT meets evidence-based criteria with 13 single case design studies.
According to the evidence-based studies, this intervention has been effective for preschoolers (3-5 years) to elementary school-age learners (6-11 years) with ASD.
DTT can be used effectively to address social, communication, behavior, joint attention, school- readiness, academic, adaptive, and vocational skills.
Fleury, V. P. (2013). Discrete trial teaching (DTT) fact sheet. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina, Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Adapted from: Bogin, J. (2008). Overview of discrete trial training. Sacramento: University of California at Davis School of Medicine, M.I.N.D. Institute, The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Kyle Bringhurst, MSW
Address: 3048 East Baseline Road Suite 107
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