Direct Behavior Rating: Assessment, Intervention, Communication

DBR in Action: supporting students in the classroom  For this graphic there is a line connecting all the images from “Start” to “Finish.”  START (Image 1: cartoon image of teacher). This is Mrs. Smith. She is a second grade teacher who uses DBR in multiple ways to support students in her classroom.  (Image 2: cartoon clipboard with DBR written at top and checklist underneath). Tier 1 – all students. Mrs. Smith uses DBR to screen her entire class on key classroom behaviors. (Image 3: cartoon image of teacher in front of classroom). Mrs. Smith reviews data and notices that most students meet expectations, but a small group as higher disruptive behavior.  (Image 4: Star). Tier 2 - some students. Mrs. Smith develops a simple group intervention and puts it into place to reduce disruptive behavior for those students.  (Image 5: cartoon clipboard with DBR written at top and checklist underneath). Mrs. Smith continues using DBR to evaluate success in reducing disruptive behavior for those students (progress monitoring). (Image 6: cartoon image of teacher in front of classroom). Mrs. Smith reviews the data and notices that most students have improved, but Johnny’s readings of disruptive behavior have not.  (Image 7: cartoon image of little boy). Tier 3 – individuals. Mrs. Smith develops an individualized intervention for Johnny. (Image 8: cartoon clipboard with DBR written at top and checklist underneath) Mrs. Smith uses DBR to monitor Johnny’s behavior and increase communication with his parents about his progress. (Image 9: cartoon image of girl with hands raised in celebration). Johnny’s behavior improves. Johnny, his parents, and Mrs. Smith are all very happy.  FINISH.   Created by Taylor Koriakin. For more information, visit our website at

If you have used DBR, we would love to hear from you! Click here to give us your feedback.

Some content on this page may require the use of a plug-in, such as Adobe Acrobat Viewer.

Why use DBR?

DBR involves rating of behavior following a specified observation period, and then sharing of that information to inform decisions. DBR offers many options to link connections across assessment, intervention, and communication uses. DBR provides a simple and inexpensive option for frequent feedback about important behaviors, facilitating communication among students, parents, and educators. Most importantly, DBR is evidence-based!
orange arrow  DBR is flexible for use across assessment, communication, and intervention purposes
orange arrow  DBR is efficient as ratings are simple and quick to complete
orange arrow  DBR is repeatable for use in progress monitoring assessment
orange arrow  DBR is defensible given increasing evidence of technical adequacy screening and progress monitoring assessment

What can DBR look like?

Circle the number that best reflects Sam’s academically engaged behavior during morning reading block. Younger Student Version: Frowny Face, Neutral Face, Smiley Face alongside scale from 0 to 10; Older student version: scale from 0 (Never, 0%) to 10 (Always, 100%) (5=50%)