Social Skills Improvement System (Parent) (SSIS)

General Information on the Measure
Purpose of the measure

The Social Skills Improvement System (SSIS) measures social skills, problem behaviors, and academic competence.

Main constructs measured

Interpersonal competencies

Applicable grade levels

Preschool, elementary, and secondary students

Publication year for the most recent version 2008
Year originally developed 1990
Related measures
Measure Administration


Method of administration


Number of items 79
Item format

Selected response

Administration time

Approximately 15-20 minutes

Available languages

English, Spanish

Fee for use Fee charged by developer
Credentials required for administration

Qualification Level B

Overall score reporting

No overall scores are reported.

Subscore reporting

There are three subscores:

  • Social skills
  • Problem behaviors
  • Academic competence
Scoring procedures

Scoring can be done using the scoring manual or using proprietary software available from Pearson.

Interpretive information

Score reports include standardized scores with percentile ranks. Narrative reports include intervention planning recommendations to improve social skills and lessen problem behaviors.

Evidence of Technical Quality
Populations for which technical quality evidence has been collected

Evidence comes from a sample of teachers, parents, and students from across the United States.

Reliability evidence

Internal consistency was calculated for all three scale scores for all forms. Median Cronbach's alpha = 0.96 (teacher), 0.96 (parent), and 0.94 (student).

Test-retest reliability within a three-month period was calculated for the subscales for all forms. Median correlation = 0.83 (teacher), 0.86 (parent), and 0.79 (student).

Inter-rater reliability for two raters was calculated for all subscales for parent and teacher forms. For teacher forms, the median reliability coefficient was 0.62; for parent forms, median reliability was 0.55.

Validity evidence
Evidence based on content
Developers conducted literature reviews and used expert judgments from professionals to select items (Gresham & Elliott, 1990).
Evidence based on response processes
No information available is in the references reviewed.
Evidence based on internal structure
Correlations among the scales and subscales were consistent with expectations. The correlation between the Social Skill scale and Problem Behavior scale was negative and moderate, ranging from -0.42 to -0.65, on all forms, except that the one for the Student form for age 8 and 12 was -0.27. The correlation between Social Skills scale and Academic Competence scale on the Teacher form for elementary and secondary students was in the 0.50s. The correlation between Problem Behaviors scale and Academic Competence scale was in the -0.40s.
Evidence based on relations with other variables
Correlations between the SSIS scale scores and scores on established measures of social skills and other behaviors indicate convergent and divergent validity. These measures include: Social Skills Rating System (SSRS; Gresham & Elliott, 1990); Behavioral Assessment Systems for Children (BASC; Reynolds & Kamphaus, 2004); Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales (VABS; Sparrow et al., 2005, 2006); Scale of Social Competence and School Adjustment (SSCSA; Walker & McConnell, 1995 a, b); and Home and Community Social Behavior Scales (HCSBS; Merrell & Caldarella, 2000).
Locating the Measure
Obtaining a copy of the measure

Gresham, F. M., & Elliot, S. N. , "Social Skills Rating System," American Guidance Service, 1990.

Gresham, F. M., & Elliot, S. N. , "Social Skills Improvement System Rating Scales manual," NCS Pearson, 2008.

Merrell K. W., & Caldarella, P. , "Home and Community Social Community Scales," Assessment Intervention Resources, 2000.

Reynolds, C. R., & Kamphaus, R. W. , "BASC-2: Behavior Assessment System for Children, second edition manual," American Guidance Service, 2004.

Sparrow, S. S., Chichetti, D. V., & Balla, D. A. , "Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales: Parent/caregiver rating form (2nd ed.)," NCS Pearson, 2005.

Sparrow, S. S., Chichetti, D. V., & Balla, D. A. , "Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales. Teacher rating form (2nd ed.)," NCS Pearson, 2006.

Walker, H. M., & McConnell, S. "Walker-McConnell Scale of Social Competence and School Adjustment, Elementary Version," Singular, 1995a.

Walker, H. M., & McConnell, S. "Walker-McConnell Scale of Social Competence and School Adjustment, Adolescent Version," Singular, 1995b.


Measure summary updated October 3, 2018.