Discrete Trial









Discriminative Stimulus

An instruction or environmental cue. Signals that reinforcement is available for a correct response.


“What’s your name?”

“Count to ten.”




A behavior that occurs contingent upon the SD.

Child comes when called.

“My name is Greg.”

“1, 2, 3, etc…”


Reinforcing Stimulus

A stimulus that follows the R and increases the likelihood that the behavior will occur in the future.

Child gets a candy when she comes when called (primary reinforcement)

“That’s right, your name is Greg!” (social reinforcement)

Tickles, hugs, kisses (physical reinforcement)


Prompting Stimulus

Assistance or cue from the teacher to help the child respond correctly.


Teacher taps the chair to prompt the child to come.

“Guh” (teacher says the first sound in the child’s name).

Teacher holds up ten fingers.


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