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Table 2 Overview of error-based and errorless learning training techniques

From: Comparison of error-based and errorless learning for people with severe traumatic brain injury: study protocol for a randomized control trial

Session Error-based learning (EBL) Errorless learning (ELL)
Session 1: role reversal or modeling Role reversal: therapist makes a number of errors across all steps of the activity (for example, incorrect sequence, omitting a step). Modeling: therapist describes out loud and models correct performance of each action during all activity steps.
Participant checks the instructions to identify the therapist’s errors, pauses the task and describes the corrective action (with prompts if needed). Participant reads instructions and observes therapist’s correct actions on each step.
Post-task review of errors during each step and corrective strategies. Post-task review of the correct performance on each step.
Participant completes the activity according to the EBL procedures with post-task discussion of errors and their significance (for example, memory problems). Participant completes the activity steps according to the ELL procedures with post-task discussion reinforcing error-free performance.
Sessions 2 to 3, 5 to 7: skill practice Participant previews the task and makes self-predictions of possible errors for each step and planned strategy use (for example, use timer for cooking). Therapist reviews the activity with the participant and breaks each step into smaller sets of action.
Participant follows activity instructions with the therapist observing, but not directing his/her actions. Therapist initially models each action (for example, measure the rice) and participants copy the action.
When an error is observed the therapist delays responding for up to 10 seconds to allow participants to self-correct the error. Therapist anticipates errors and provides a high level of cuing to guide participant’s actions to avoid opportunities for making errors.
If an error is not self-corrected, therapists provide a non-specific prompt (‘Can you stop and check what you need to do’). If an error occurs, the correct action is modeled and practiced until performance is error free.
Post-task self-evaluation of performance with goals set to improve in target areas. Post-task positive reinforcement for correct performance.
Sessions 4 and 8: skill mastery Pre-task discussion and on-task prompting targets participant’s awareness and correction of any errors on the activity. Pre-task review and repeated practice and reinforcement of correct actions within each step.
Therapist systematically fades prompts to support independent and self-directed checking and strategy use. Therapist maintains a high level of cuing to ensure error-free performance and habits.