Individuals with autism benefit when using the DT Trainer
My son Karl was walking by age 1 and began saying his first words. He was learning and he understood and was engaged with his mother and me. By 1½ years he was no longer speaking and did not seem to be learning. We had him evaluated and got him into early intervention at 21 months but he continued to lose skills and was less and less responsive. At 2 ½, he had no receptive language, his babbling was limited to “m-m-m-m-…”, and he was becoming more and more frustrated off in his own little world. We learned that having a special needs child forever changes the lives of his or her parents and other family members.
His mother read a book byan author about his son with autism and itdescribed Karl. We had him formally diagnosed and started researching autism. We found out about Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) and even before we got an intensive 40-hour-per-week program started, we began using the methods and he was finally learning again! Looking back, Karl was clearly autistic at 1½ years old but we wasted a year allowing him to regress before we had the tools to start rebuilding skills he had lost.
I saw that with proper methods that my son was learning, but his therapists had to painstakingly teach almost everything that he needed to know. I created the DT Trainer to emulate the ABA therapy provided for my son. With the DT Trainer Karl Jr. could learn on his own time at least some of what he needed.
As a computer engineer and software developer, one of my missions became helping my son and children like him. I went to the national ABA conference and met experts and researchers to help guide the work. A behavioral analyst called DT Trainer(DTT) “Skinner’s Teaching Machine on Steroids,” referring to the work of the famous Harvard behaviorist B. F. Skinner.
The program I developed is now used in more than a thousand school districts nationwide and districts use the DT Trainer with as many as a third of students in special education, not just those with autism. The program was instrumental in increasing Karl’s learning including learning to read, even after four years of his failing to do so.
I founded AES to move research to practice, making the tools affordable so that they could have a deep impact on students with autism and other learning disabilities. Local school districts began purchasing the program. With feedback from academics, practitioners, and researchers, as well as feedback from educators, the program has evolved and expanded to where now there are hundreds of content programs and reinforcers and a rich variety of features ready to accommodate a wide range of students.
School districts primarily use the program in self-contained classes where there are students in the developmental range of 2 to 9 years of age. Districts use the program in at-risk preschool classes where students are not yet in special education but with intensive intervention they may be able to attend regular classes. Districts use the software with autism as well as other learning disabilities. The software has also been used in hundreds of private schools and service providers, and thousands of homes, as well as by some school boards in Canada.
Users have high praise for the DT Trainer.
"This is the best software we have ever seen. Our daughter wouldn't use a computer, I had purchased every program I could think of and she was not interested. I purchased the DT Trainer from Accelerations Education Software and she wants to use it all the time. It is a great program. Very impressive,” says Kristye, parent of a child with autism.
You can find more information, training videos, and free trials at: www.dttrainer.com.
You can write to Karl Smith, Accelerations Educational Software, 1509 Lady St., Columbia, SC 29201. His phone number is 803-403-1336, and his fax is 803-403-1337.