This timeline highlights many of the milestones in the history of Direct Instruction. It draws heavily from the chronology of Siegfried Engelmann’s career as printed in Engelmann’s Direct Instruction: Selected Writings from the Past Half Century.
1960–1964: Siegfried Engelmann worked in different advertising agencies and began analyzing techniques for marketing to children in order to determine what type of input was necessary to induce retention.
1963: Engelmann filmed his teaching sessions with his twin sons in order to demonstrate the effectiveness of his techniques and theories of instruction to education departments in various universities.
1964–1966: Engelmann began working with Carl Bereiter as a research associate for the Institute for Research on Exceptional Children, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Illinois.
1964: Creation of the Bereiter Engelmann preschool.
1966: Give Your Child a Superior Mind is published.
1966: Teaching Disadvantaged Children in the Preschool is published.
1968: Project Follow Through begins.
1969: First DISTAR instructional programs are released. Initially DISTAR Reading and Language.
1969: Engelmann-Becker Corp., Eugene, Oregon founded.
1969: Preventing Failure in the Primary Grades is published.
1970: Direct Instruction Follow Through Model moves to the University of Oregon.
1970: DISTAR Arithmetic I instructional program is published.
1974: Engelmann’s first study using tactual vocoders with deaf subjects is published.
1975: Your Child Can Succeed: How to Get the Most Out of School for Your Child is published.
1975: Corrective Reading instructional program is published.
1975: First DI Conference is held, Eugene, Oregon.
1976: Spelling Through Morphographs instructional program is published.
1980: Spelling Mastery instructional program is published.
1981: Corrective Mathematics instructional program is published.
1982: Theory of Instruction is published.
1983: Generalized Compliance Training: A Direct-Instruction program for managing severe behavior problems is published.
1983: Reading Mastery instructional program is published (First revision of DISTAR Reading).
1983: Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons is published.
1984: Engelmann receives honorary doctorate degree from the Psychology Department of Western Michigan University.
1985: Mastering Fractions instructional program is published, the first in a series of videodisc programs.
1985: Expressive Writing instructional program is published.
1987: Understanding Chemistry and Energy instructional videodisc program is published.
1988: Earth Science instructional videodisc program is published.
1991: Reasoning & Writing instructional program is published.
1991: Engelmann sues the California State Board, Department of Education and Curriculum Commission for failure to follow administrative rules related to textbook adoptions.
1991: Theory of Instruction is revised and republished.
1992: Connecting Math Concepts instructional program is published.
1992: War Against the Schools’ Academic Child Abuse is published.
1994: Engelmann receives American Psychological Association Fred Keller Award of Excellence.
1996: Sponsor Findings from Project Follow Through is published.
1996: Research on Direct Instruction: 25 Years Beyond DISTAR is published.
1997: National Institute for Direct Instruction (NIFDI) is founded with Engelmann as the director.
1997: Horizons Learning to Read instructional program is published.
2000: Zigsite.com is launched.
2000: Engelmann is named one of the 54 “most influential people” in the history of special education by Remedial and Special Education.
2000: Journeys Direct Instruction Reading program is published.
2001: Funnix Beginning Reading instructional program is published.
2001: Español to English (Language for Learning) instructional program is published.
2002: Engelmann receives the Council of Scientific Society Presidents 2002 Educational Research Award (Award of Achievement in Education Research).
2002: Funnix Reading 2 instructional program is published.
2003: Engelmann retired, granted Professor Emeritus of Special Education, University of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon.
2004: Inferred Functions of Performance and Learning is published.
2007: Teaching Needy Kids in Our Backward System: 42 Years of Trying is published.
2008: Socrates and Education: Bussing is published on zigsite.com (first in Socrates series).
2008: Reading Mastery Signature Edition program is published.
2010: Direct Instruction Spoken English (DISE) instructional program is published.
2010: Could John Stuart Mill Have Saved Our Schools? is published.
2011: Funnix Beginning Math instructional program is published.
2014: Connecting Math Concepts Comprehensive Edition is published.