Join us this summer…

Your PORTL to Shaping

Discover how to take your training skills to the next level

Three individuals, deep in conversation, during a PORTL game at a shaping workshop in Germany

Join Dr. Jesús Rosales-Ruiz and Mary Hunter for two intensive days of lectures and hands-on exercises using PORTL.

2019 seminar dates:

August 17-18, 2019: Your PORTL to Shaping
Hurst Conference Center, Hurst, Texas
(near the Dallas-Ft. Worth Airport)

September 28-29 2019: Your PORTL to Shaping
San Diego, California.
Please note, the California seminar will be hosted by Emily Larlham. Please visit her website for more information and to register.

Please stay tuned for dates for our 2020 PORTL workshops!

These seminars will allow you to practice your shaping skills with another human as the learner. You will also get to play the role of the learner, which will give you more insight into how people and animals learn. Throughout the weekend, you’ll learn about behavior principles and techniques that will help you create optimal learning situations when working with both animals and people. You’ll also learn foundation skills that will help you problem solve and think more creatively when designing training solutions.

Each seminar will be limited to 30 attendees to allow ample time for discussion and questions and so that participants can receive individual coaching during the shaping exercises.

To learn more about PORTL, please visit the Behavior Explorer website.

Why play PORTL?

Dr. Rosales-Ruiz and Mary Hunter have given PORTL workshops to audiences of both professional animal trainers and behavior analysts throughout the United States and in Europe. Attendees find PORTL to be both educational and enlightening and are eager to continuing using it after the seminar as a tool to gain insight into learning and behavior. Here are some comments from previous workshop and seminar attendees:


“I LOVED the PORTL workshop. So many useful lessons to help us think carefully about our training and gain empathy for our learners!”


“I am going to have all my trainers practice this game with each other.”


“PORTL was a huge ‘ah ha!’ moment for me as I experienced being the learner. It really highlighted some critical concepts that the teacher must consider, especially in lesson planning.”


“PORTL really helps you to understand things from your dog’s viewpoint.”


“Dog trainers tend to forget that our primary job is to teach the dog owners how to train their dogs, not for us to train their dogs. PORTL helps us understand how to teach owners step-by-step.”


“PORTL – wow! I learned so much from one simple exercise. I finally understand resurgence from seeing it happen.”