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Formative Assessment Instrumentation and Procedures for Reading

Technology #20100206

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Reading PassagesThe reading assessments provide a progress monitoring tool for educators.Assessments help educators and students recognize and respond to reading weaknesses.
Theodore J. Christ, PhD
Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies, Educational Psychology
External Link (
Scott Ardoin, PhD
Associate Professor, University of Georgia
Tanya L. Eckert, PhD
Associate Professor, Syracuse University

Formative Assessment Improves Curriculum Based Measurement Progress Monitoring

Oral Reading Progress Monitoring

The Formative Assessment Instrumentation and Procedures for Reading reduces the measurement error of progress monitoring with Curriculum Based Measurement of Oral Reading. An improved development procedure establishes reading passages that enhance the quality of progress monitoring by increasing the reliability and accuracy of the reading assessment. Passage sets from first through fifth grade reading levels are used as progress monitoring and benchmarking tools to evaluate the level and rate of a student's oral reading fluency. The passage sets are developed using a new methodology that ensures the reading comprehension and fluency level is similar to the student's curriculum, producing accurate progress monitoring results. The results are evaluated based on the number of words that were read correctly per minute. With the reduction of measurement error and background noise, educators are able to accurately evaluate a student's reading progress and provide assistance to develop these skills. The formative assessment supplies feedback to educators in order to enhance, recognize, and respond to learning.

Note: The Formative Assessment Instrumentation and Procedures for Reading has been exclusively licensed to Fast Bridge Learning. If you have questions, please contact Fast Bridge Learning at

Reading Assessment Reduces Measurement Error

Large standard errors in progress monitoring tools originate from the inconsistency in the level of passage difficulty. The significant standard error stems from the development of the reading assessment, using a readability formula. The Formative Assessment Instrumentation and Procedures for Reading reduces the standard error by employing a new methodology that meets four specific criteria:

  • random
  • readability
  • mean
  • Euclidean distance. Euclidean distance measures the passage variability and is used to group similar passages and identify outlier passages, allowing reading assessments to be comprised of passages of the same skill level. The measurement of Euclidean distance is the key improvement responsible for reducing measurement error.


  • Progress monitoring tool - provides educators with accurate and reliable student evaluations.
  • Reduces measurement error and background noise?the reading assessment is developed with an improved methodology for evaluating oral reading fluency.
  • Provides a formative assessment - educators receive feedback that can be used to adapt teaching methods and meet a student's individual needs.
  • Computer automated - produces results quickly.