The Incredible 5-Point Scale



The Incredible 5-Point Scale written by Kari Dunn Buron and Mitzi Curtis describes their wildly popular 5-point scale that has helped millions all over the world. Kari Dunn Buron has over thirty years of experience teaching students with Autism and Mitzi Davis is an Autism resource specialist working in this field since 1978!! Their combined wisdom has resulting in developing this scale. This is a review of the second and updated edition of this book.


The immense popularity of this program perhaps lies in its utter simplicity and adaptability. You don’t need an advanced degree to implement this, just a thorough understanding of the individual you are working is all that is needed. You can adapt it to suit any situation from loud voices to getting to close to improper touching to hitting to abusing to asking for a break to social skills to communication to friendship to worrying to emotions to losing and winning, etc.


The book starts off with an introduction that talks about the steps to follow when creating a scale and some examples of concepts/situations where it can be successfully implemented. The second chapter – the tried and true scales from the first edition, describes the 14 scales from the first edition and some success stories. From the third chapter onwards, new content is introduced and starts with – Scales for young children. This chapter delves in depth and discusses whether to use a 3-point or a 5-point scale and how to use favourite characters or objects as part of the scale. Sample scales include voice volume, energy levels, social behaviour and also the 5-stars concept. I loved the5-stars concept as it is highly adaptable and encouraging.


The next chapter – Scales for students with more classic forms of Autism and descibes how it can be used in conjunction with Social Stories to reduce anxiety and behaviour issues as well as how a caregiver can use this to help them stay self-regulated. The chapter – More Pretty good scale ideas,  has nine additional scales with stories and details about how to work through difficult social concepts. There is also information how to create scales working together with the student/child. This is my favourite chapter and is very informative. The last chapter is – Sample goals and objectives related to the use of the 5-point scale.


I am in awe of this concept and its utter simplicity. Watch out for the next book review where I will review another great book from these authors.


You can purchase this book on Amazon India



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