Tiered Support

Multi-leveled support can be viewed as layers or tiers of increasingly intense intervention that respond to student-specific needs. While RtI models are commonly and graphically illustrated as a 3-tiered pyramid, the number of tiers or levels will vary depending upon resources available. Information regarding multi-level support can be filtered by specific tier and/or level.


Considering Tier 3 Within a Response-to-Intervention Model

Ervin, R. A. (University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada)

Tier 3 in an RtI framework is intended for students who are not responding to core instruction or supplemental interventions at Tier 2. This article details considerations within Tier 3 and three questions to ask about the student, strategies, available resources, and outcomes of interventions.

Scientifically Based Research

NCREL Learning Points Associates

An eight-page booklet outlining criteria that enable school personnel to evaluate evidence of effectiveness of instructional practices/strategies. List specific characteristics associated with scientifically based research (SBR) along with guiding questions that can be used to evaluate SBR. A glossary of common research terms is also provided

A brief article that defines SBR and describes its historical roots. Explains in detail criteria used to distinguish whether programs or instruction is SBR. Also discusses implications of SBR for school personnel whose responsibility involves selection of program and practices supported by SBR.

A ten-page booklet that provides an overview of scientifically based research (SBR). The booklet begins with a definition of SBR based on the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001, followed by a series of questions teachers can use to help them determine if a particular instructional practice or strategy meets established standards for SBR

Guidance Documents

Guide developed by the U.S. Department of Education to help educators determine whether a program, intervention or instructional practice meets the SBR criteria established in NCLB (2002). Discusses how to evaluate interventions for effectiveness. The guide also breaks down the elements of research studies to conclude whether they are truly considered SBR.


Recognition & Response: RtI Goes to PreK

Buysse, V. & Peisner-Feinberg, E. (2011)

This presentation delivered by Dr. Virginia Buysse and Dr. Ellen Peisner-Feinberg was presented March 2011 at a conference hosted by the NYS Prekindergarten Administrators’ Association. Recognition & Response is a tiered model for high quality instruction and tiered model for providing high quality instruction and targeted interventions that are matched to the learning needs of 3 – 5 year-olds. The presentation describes the three components of the R&R system and how they differ across each tier. The presentation covers how universal screening and progress monitoring within an RtI/R&R framework differ from traditional methods of screening and assessment.

Participants will learn about the key features of the Recognition and Response (R&R) framework that is designed to enhance early academic learning in language, literacy, and mathematics. Participants will consider definitions and view video exemplars of key assessment and instructional practices, and will obtain practical information about tools and resources that can be used to implement R&R. Participants will have an opportunity to consider how the R&R approach fits with their existing program policies and practices, and identify concrete steps for implementing this approach in preschool classrooms. This all-day PD session will address the following topics:

Overview of the Recognition and Response Framework
Formative Assessments (Recognition)
Foundational and Targeted Instruction (Response)
Collaborative Problem-Solving
Planning for Implementation


Student Center Activities

Florida Center for Reading Research (2005)

Provides access to a wide range of reading activities organized by reading element and grade level for the purposes of helping teachers differentiate reading instruction. Each activity lists specific objective, needed materials, and detailed directions. All materials needed to implement each activity is all provided.


Selecting Evidence-Based Tools and Programs for Implementing Response-to-Intervention

National Center on Response to Intervention (NCRTI) – Presented by Dr. Allison Gandhi (2010)

This webinar provides an overview of the screening, progress monitoring, and instructional tools charts provided on the NCRTI website. The presenter walks through the process that teams can use when selecting an appropriate tool and what to think about when determining the actions your school/district will take when implementing RtI. Discussions about how to use the results to inform decisions about what your logistical needs and priorities are for your school/district; e.g. materials, space, time, LEP students, funds.


The Center for RtI in Early Childhood operates out of the University of Kansas in collaboration with Ohio State University, University of Minnesota and the Dynamic Measurement Group. It’s overall mission is to conduct research and disseminate resources and information relative to the implementation of RtI at the early childhood level. The website hosts information describing the RtI model at a preschool level and descriptions of interventions that can be used at Tiers 2 & 3 within an RtI framework. Links are also provided to articles describing the RtI process for young children.

The Florida Center for Reading Research (FRCC) provides useful information school based programs and interventions. It provides summaries of these programs and evaluates each one against criteria established by the NCLB (2002) on scientifically based research. The FRCC published a series of reports that provides a summary of instructional programs and interventions school districts are interested in using at various tiers with the RtI process.

A website that provides summarizes of programs and practices for children that have positive outcomes. Reviews and posts outcomes associated with efficacy studies of a variety of programs targeting education, family, and community. The site links research articles with programs, and also provides video clips, resources and tools, and an option to submit programs for review.

Recognition and Response: RtI for Pre-K

Frank Porter Graham (FPG) Child Development Institute at the University of North Carolina

Operating out of the Frank Porter Graham (FPG) Child Development Institute at the University of North Carolina. Recognition and Response is a tiered prevention model for children at the preschool level. The website provides information regarding this model as well as video clips that illustrate administration of universal screening and progress monitoring and tier 2 small group lessons

Created by the Johns Hopkins University School of Education’s Center for Data-Driven Reform in Education, the Best Evidence Encyclopedia, commonly referred to as the “BEE,” is a free website offering summaries of scientific reviews. Each study is evaluated by a set of criteria which was created to determine the strength of the research. The BEE is funded by the Institute of Education Sciences (I.E.S.).

Established in 2002, through an initiative of the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Science, its chief function is to assess the rigor of research evidence regarding interventions and programs used in schools. The website provides a set of guides that summarizes and rates the effectives of various curricula/programs using criteria established by NCLB (2002) on SBR.

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