Universal and early screening for educational difficulties: Current and future approaches

Stephen N. Elliott, Nan Huai, Andrew T. Roach

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Sound academic screening can be done efficiently and effectively in the early elementary years. There are existing screening tools available and new ones being validated that collectively can address the need for universal and systematic narrow-band and broad-based assessment of students' academic enabling behaviors and academic skills in key content areas. After establishing a conceptual framework of academic target behaviors and skills, we examine two assessment traditions-teacher rating scales and CBM-and supporting literature for current screening approaches. A description and review of technical evidence for two illustrative screening approaches, the DIBELS and BACESS, are provided. The article concludes with a discussion of future directions for screening research and practices that include downward extensions of existing screening methods to include preschoolers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)137-161
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of School Psychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Academic difficulties
  • Academic screening
  • Universal screening

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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