Hands-on Intensive For Shaping Behavior
Join us to learn how to shape behaviors without having to use modeling, physical guidance, or hand-over-hand prompting and create a task analysis for them. After practicing with other participants you’ll have the opportunity to try out your skills with a variety of animals at Lemon’s Hope Sanctuary in Brattleboro Vermont including mini-horses, sheep, goat, guinea pigs, birds, dogs and cats. Get started or continue to practice using a clicker as a conditioned reinforcer (marker or bridge) for training and shaping.
Participants will be introduced to PORTL (Portable Operant Teaching Lab). PORTL is a tabletop game that provides an interactive environment for learning about behavior principles and investigating behavioral phenomena. PORTL had its beginnings in another game, called GENABACAB, which was developed by English dog trainer Kay Laurence. This was Debbie’s first introduction to the process, and she completed 2 levels of Kay’s Competency Assessment Programme (CAP). About a decade ago, Laurence taught this game to Dr. Jesús Rosales-Ruiz and his graduate students.
Participants will be introduced to
Operant conditioning principles and contingency analysis
Developing criteria and building incremental teaching plans
Using conditioned and primary reinforcement
Reinforcement delivery, rate and timing
Adding and changing Sds
Creating and managing the instructional setting
This event has been designed for BCBAs and RBTs along with animal trainers to expand on their understanding of operant conditioning, and work on the skills of identifying and deconstructing behavior in order to build training plans, create criteria for reinforcement, and improve the timing and rate of reinforcement. Professional animal trainers have been working with non-verbal learners for decades and have been assessing the risks and potential fallout for using force or coercion when training.
Your instructors, Sara Matters, MA, and Debbie Jacobs, RBT, CPDT, specialize in working with animals who have experienced trauma events in their lives and struggle to live as pets. Both have trained and been mentored by master animal trainers including Bob Bailey and Jean Donaldson. They have also done additional training at Natural Encounters Inc. in Florida training parrots and other birds. Sara has also participated in Mustang Camp in NM.
Clinics that are interested in scheduling this learning opportunity for their staff can contact Sara for details.
You can read more about PORTL in the Fourth Quarter 2016 article in Operants.
Contact us with any questions.
Dates: October 28, 2023 9am-4pm EST
Location: Lemon’s Hope Sanctuary, 1104 Ames Hill, Brattleboro VT