A strength-based, nationally standardized, valid and reliable tool for screening and progress monitoring of social and emotional competence that can be completed in under 1 MINUTE.

Screen in 1 Minute

The DESSA-mini enables teachers and staff to screen an entire classroom or group of students in one planning period (less than 45 minutes).

Monitor Progress

Consisting of four different, yet equivalent, 8-item forms, the DESSA-mini provides a simple and effective way to track changes in social and emotional competence over time.

DESSA Mini Social Emotional Learning Program

Preventive Measures

In a recent study, students in the Need for Instruction range on the DESSA-mini at the beginning of the school year were


to commit a serious behavioral infraction by the end of that school year, compared to their peers. The DESSA-mini can help identify students with a Need for Instruction and intervene before challenging behaviors occur, using only 8 strength-based items.

Texas: Commissioner’s List of Approved Prekindergarten and Kindergarten Assessment Instruments

The DESSA-mini has been selected as part of a comprehensive list of approved Health and Wellness assessments for use in Kindergarten in the state of Texas. This list was created to ensure that all public and charter schools select assessment instruments that are scientifically valid and reliable, user-friendly, and are a comprehensive assessment of the specified area.

If you are interested in bringing the DESSA System to your program, fill out the form below and an SEL Account Executive will contact you with more information.

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What is the difference between the DESSA and the DESSA-mini?

The DESSA-mini

  • 8 Questions

  • Can be used to quickly assess a group of students

  • Typically used for screening and progress monitoring

  • Provides a snapshot of students’ overall social-emotional competence


  • 72 Questions

  • Can be used to assess students who may need additional SEL instruction

  • Typically used as a more in-depth assessment

  • Provides a detailed picture of students’ social-emotional competence

Both the DESSA and DESSA-mini include the following:

  • Supported by Aperture’s DESSA System, including access to growth strategies for each competency

  • Backed by over 12 years of research in social and emotional learning

  • Assesses Aperture’s 8 SEL Competencies

  • Provides quick and easy reporting to see screening results and make informed decisions about student needs

FREE Webinar on the DESSA-mini!

Looking for more detailed information about DESSA-mini? Watch our webinar, brought to you by our Director of Sales & Business Development, Marc Kirsch. In this webinar, Marc will walk you through the basics – including when and why you should use the DESSA-mini vs. the full DESSA.

Watch Now!