SPS Criteria for Tier 2 and Tier 3 Interventions

If a school is considering the use of an intervention that is not on the Menu of Interventions, the intervention and intended implementation must meet the criteria elements listed below.


SPS Criteria for Tier II & III Interventions




The intervention has a specific purpose for which it has been designed.

Research basis

Research has demonstrated that the intervention is effective with promising, moderate or strong evidence. 


Please see the resources below to aid in this determination.


The intervention has a prescribed method of implementation.

Instructionally explicit

The intervention outlines or provides for explicit instruction in the area of focus.

Allows for progress monitoring

The intervention either includes progress monitoring tools or lends itself to progress monitoring in order to determine effectiveness of intervention for student(s).


Considerations when selecting an intervention that meets the above criteria

  • Aligned with specific student need
  • Appropriate for the age/grade level of the student(s)
  • Training
    • Initial requirements
    • Ongoing support
  • Materials/infrastructure needed to implement with fidelity
  • Similarity of planned implementation structure to that of research
  • Ability to maintain fidelity to the intervention
  • Use of the Taxonomy of Intervention Intensity
    • Strength: the evidence of effectiveness for students with intensive needs;
    • Dosage: the number of opportunities the student has to respond and receive feedback from the teacher;
    • Alignment: how well the intervention matches the targeted academic skills or behaviors of concern, as well as incorporates grade-appropriate standards or behaviors we would expect for a particular context;
    • Attention to transfer: whether the intervention is explicitly designed to help students make connections between the skills taught in the intervention and skills learned in other contexts and environments;
    • Comprehensiveness: how well the intervention incorporates a comprehensive array of explicit instruction principles; and
    • Behavioral or academic support: whether an academic intervention incorporates behavioral strategies that may support students with self-regulation, motivation, or externalizing behaviors that may impact their ability to learn, or whether a behavioral intervention considers academic components as part of the intervention.


Resources to assess research basis/find interventions with strong backing


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