Academic Intervention: Definition, Plan & Strategies

Instructor: Lindy Hatten

Lindy has a M.Ed in TESOL with a Cross-Cultural concentration from Saint Mary's College of California. She has taught for 25 years at the secondary and university levels.

An academic intervention is a classroom strategy to assist students in learning. In this lesson, examples of various strategies will be shown, and we'll identify the strengths in each.

What is an Academic Intervention?

An academic intervention is a strategy used to teach a new skill, build fluency in a skill, or encourage a child to apply an existing skill to new situations or settings (Wright, 2012). An academic intervention is not an accommodation. While an accommodation can also be made for any student, it does not alter what the student is expected to learn. An accommodation makes learning accessible to the student and allows the student to show what they know (Gennerman, 2014). Usually, the students who receive assistance from an academic intervention are students who may struggle in the classroom with a variety of learning skills. These struggles could considerably impact the student's school performance. Depending upon the school district, subject-matter support can come in many ways. Academic interventions might include helping a student with organizing their notebook. An intervention also might be working with students on time management skills or consistently submitting homework assignments. Study strategies, note-taking skills and using weekly agendas are also items that fall into the category of academic interventions.

classroom activity

The actual strategies and the amount of time allotted is based on a student's identified need.

What are Examples of Academic Intervention Strategies?

It is important to understand is that academic interventions are individually set for students. The teacher or academic interventionist must know the student and their needs for the intervention to work.

Sometimes all a student needs is a new physical arrangement within the classroom. Often, moving the student's seat near the teacher or isolating a student cures a problem, especially if the problem deals with a student's lack of attention on a subject.

If the academic issue is more organizational, offering assistance or setting up a reward system often encourages students. Providing questions at the end of a reading helps a student focus on the important points of specific paragraphs. If the student is allowed to write on their reading paper, showing the student how to highlight important words and phrases is a great was to guide the student academically.

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