Video on Demand by Karen Pryor Clicker Training |

The Complete Trainer: A Road Map for Education & Skill Development

Learning to be a great trainer means developing deep skills in a great variety of areas: stimulus control, marker timing, observational skills, food delivery, shaping strategies, targeting, reinforcement, criteria adjustments, empathy, recordkeeping, dealing with incorrect responses, training plans, and more. 

These skills are generally taught as individual topics and skills. As a consequence, it's easy for trainers to lack an understanding of the broader journey or how certain paths intersect and support one another. But like any other journey, you can make a route that works for you if you have a great map. In this Session, Ken Ramirez helps you see the complete training map so that you can make your own way across the training landscape, confident of your navigation and sure of your destination.

Ken Ramirez

Ken Ramirez is the Executive Vice-President (EVP) and Chief Training Officer of Karen Pryor Clicker Training (KPCT). There he helps to oversee the vision, development, and implementation of training education programs for the organization.

A 40+-year veteran of animal care and training, Ken is a biologist and animal behaviorist who has  overseen or consulted on training projects for many zoological organizations throughout the world. He began his training career working with guide dogs for the visually impaired and continues to work with organizations training dogs for service work, search-and-rescue, bomb detection, and narcotic detection. Ken has also maintained a close affiliation with pet training throughout his career.

Prior to his work with KPCT, Ken served as EVP of Animal Care and Animal Training at Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium for more than 25 years. There he developed and supervised animal care and animal health programs, staff training and development, and public presentation programs for more than 32,000 animals. Ken has written for numerous scientific publications and authored countless popular articles. He is the author of the bestselling ANIMAL TRAINING: Successful Animal Management through Positive Reinforcement as well as his newest book, The Eye of the Trainer: Animal Training, Transformation, and Trust.

Ken taught a graduate course on animal training at Western Illinois University for 20 years and has been active in several professional organizations, including as a past president of the International Marine Animal Trainer’s Association (IMATA). He is actively involved in the creation of a certification process for animal trainers in zoological settings. Currently, Ken is developing courses and programming at The Ranch, the Karen Pryor National Training Center in the state of Washington.