Evaluation of the Errorless Learning Technique in Children With Traumatic Brain Injury

Julie Landis, Gerri Hanten, Harvey S. Levin, Xiaoqi Li, Linda Ewing-Cobbs, Jackie Duron, Walter M. High

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Landis J, Hanten G, Levin HS, Li X, Ewing-Cobbs L, Duron J, High WM Jr. Evaluation of the errorless learning technique in children with traumatic brain injury. Objective: To compare errorless learning with trial-and-error (T&E) learning of declarative facts in children with memory disorders secondary to traumatic brain injury (TBI). Design: Retrospective within-subjects concurrent treatment design. Setting: Participants' school or home. Participants: Thirty-four children, ages 6 to 18 years, with mild, moderate, or severe postacute TBI who met criteria for memory impairment. Intervention: Conditions consisted of an errorless learning method and a T&E method. Within a session, half the items were taught with the errorless learning method and half with the T&E method. Each child received two 1-hour sessions a week for 7 weeks. Main Outcome Measures: Relative effectiveness of errorless learning and T&E methods for (1) initial learning and (2) retention over time for learned items. Results: There was an advantage for T&E on initial learning. In children with mild, but not moderate or severe TBI, 2-day retention was better with the errorless learning technique; 7-day retention was better with errorless learning in young children with mild TBI. Seventy-seven-day retention revealed an advantage for errorless learning in younger children with severe TBI. Conclusions: Findings did not support errorless learning as a generalized intervention for learning difficulties after TBI or identify specific age- or injury-severity groups that benefited from this technique.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)799-805
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of physical medicine and rehabilitation
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2006
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation


  • Brain injuries
  • Pediatrics
  • Rehabilitation


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