What is the Taxonomy of Intervention Intensity?

The Taxonomy of Intervention Intensity (Fuchs, Fuchs, & Malone, 2017) can be used to select or evaluate an intervention platform used as the validated intervention platform or the foundation of the DBI process. It can also be used to guide the adaptation of intensification of an intervention during the intervention adaptation step of the DBI process. The Taxonomy includes the following dimensions:

  • 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.
The final dimension of the Taxonomy, individualization, focuses on the ongoing use of progress monitoring data and other diagnostic data sources to intensify and individualize the intervention based on student need. This approach mirrors the remaining steps of the DBI process that consist of data collection and modification in an iterative process until improvement is seen.

Tools and Resources to Learn About the Taxonomy of Intervention Intensity

Fuchs, L. S., Fuchs, D., & Malone A. S. (2017). The taxonomy of intervention intensity. Teaching Exceptional Children, 50(1), 35–43.