The popularity of trainers like Pat Parelli and Australia�s behaviourist Dr Andrew McLean suggest there is interest in learning more about training and theory, however access to professional trainers is limited. Two studies carried out in Australia and New Zealand, highlight two key findings: i) there is a lack of understanding of how operant training techniques can be used with horses; and, ii) a large number of horses fail to reach potential (wastage). While neither study demonstrates that there is a direct correlation between these findings, these results suggest that there is room for improvement in both areas. Our goal is to develop a training system that is cost effective, reliable and educationally structured on sound learning principles that allows the student to take charge of their learning, which in turn may impact on both the trainer�s learning experience and the potential for the horse. This paper discusses the initial development of a training model for future investigation.
Southcombe, K., & Peters, H. L. (2009). Development of a self-directed learning programme on how to implement positive reinforcement with horses. In 6th Annual Conference of the New Zealand Association of Behaviour Analysis, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand.