Minnesota PBIS

Getting a decision system to track behavior

Why a decision system?

One of the hallmarks of PBIS is collecting and using both implementation and student behavior data for decision-making. This decision-making progress allows your team to track your progress in implementation and outcomes and respond to issues specific to your school or program.

Research has shown that educators can make more effective and efficient decisions when they have the right data in the right form at the right time. A decision system that tracks behavior incidents will help you enter, organize, sort, and visualize this information so your school team can use it.

Getting a decision system

There are many different types of data systems available to track behavior. The most important features for making decisions are the ability to:

  1. Review school-wide referral patterns: Five basic reports should help teams answer these questions:
    1. How often do referrals occur?
    2. Example triangle graph with no values displayed
What problem behaviors occur most frequently in our building?
    3. Where are problem behaviors most likely to occur?
    4. When are problem behaviors most likely to occur?
    5. Which students are involved in referrals?


  1. Define behavior patterns in greater detail: Specific questions about overall school-wide patterns, like disproportionality by race or ethnicity, detailed information about individual students for targeted and intensive supports, and year-end reports to guide action planning and celebrate your efforts by sharing with others.

Schools that are part of PBIS cohort training through the Regional Implementation Projects have the option to use School-Wide Information System (SWIS) free of charge during their two years of training, if they feel like their student information system is not yet built to be a decision system. For more information about SWIS plus a Demo click here.

Precision Problem-Solving

SWIS has features like a Drill Down tool that can be used to develop more targeted behavior supports and practices for improved student outcomes, or precision problem-solving. You can use the following Drill Down worksheet provided here by SWIS with your existing decision system at no-cost, or feel free to share it with your student information system provider as a guide to add the features that you need.

For more information on getting a decision system set up for your school, contact your Minnesota PBIS RIP for more information.