Oral reading rates of second-grade students.
The importance of reading fluently is widely recognized in school effectiveness, reform, and improvement efforts of the educational community, yet there are few large-scale, structured assessments of the progression of students’ reading rates over time. This study documented 2nd-grade students’ oral reading rates on the basis of fall, winter, and spring assessments. Using growth curve analysis, we identified models for a sample (n = 5,796) of students in 79 schools in a large urban school district in the United States. We found that, although school characteristics were significant predictors of the children’s initial oral reading status, they were mostly not significant predictors of their reading rate over time. At the individual level, girls had a better performance than did boys in reading achievement testing, and no statistically significant difference was noted between boys and girls in their growth rates during the 2nd grade. On the other hand, special education children not only achieved less than did non-special education children in oral reading but also evidenced a significantly lower rate of increase. The trustworthiness of “at risk” and “low risk” instructional recommendations on the basis of oral reading rates was high. We discuss these findings in light of the existing research on reading fluency. Our findings have implications for research and instruction for fluency and literacy development of both fluent and nonfluent readers. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved)
from the Journal of Educational Psychology