Reading Fundamentals #3:
The Elements of Effective Reading Instruction & Assessment
Instructor Name: Dr. A.N. (Bob) Pillay
Facilitator: Mick R. Jackson MS/ED
Office Hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST Monday - Friday
Address: Virtual Education Software
16201 E Indiana Ave, Suite 1450
Spokane, WA 99216
This course will focus on learning to read, reading to learn, and an introduction to reading assessment. As part of these two key areas of reading instruction, the five elements of effective reading instruction will be highlighted, including definitions, implications for instruction, and future directions. These five elements include instruction in: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and text comprehension. Further, we discuss information on teacher preparation in learning about comprehension strategy instruction and reading instruction, as well as how to integrate computer technology into the classroom. Additionally, the course will provide information on important assessment terms and definitions and will explore how reading assessment fits within federal mandated programs. This analysis includes specific recommendations on 29 reading assessments. Finally, the course describes how teachers can conduct pivotal curriculum-based measurement procedures in their classrooms.
This computer-based instruction course is a self-supporting program that provides instruction, structured practice, and evaluation all on your home or school computer. Technical support information can be found in the Help section of your course.
Course Materials (Online)
Title: Reading Fundamentals #3: The Elements of Effective Reading Instruction & Assessment
Authors: Greg Benner, Ph.D., Nancy Marchand-Martella, Ph.D., and Ronald Martella, Ph.D.
Publisher: Virtual Education Software, inc. 2004, Revised 2010
Instructor Name: Dr. A.N. (Bob) Pillay
Facilitator: Mick R. Jackson MS/ED
Academic work submitted by the individual (such as papers, assignments, reports, tests) shall be the student’s own work or appropriately attributed in part or in whole to its correct source. Submission of commercially prepared (or group prepared) materials as if they are one’s own work is unacceptable.
Aiding Honesty in Others
The individual will encourage honesty in others by refraining from providing materials or information to another person with knowledge that these materials or information will be used improperly.
Violations of these academic standards will result in the assignment of a failing grade and subsequent loss of credit for the course.
This course is designed to be an informational course with application to reading programs for kindergarten through third grade. The course is designed for both regular and exceptional education teachers and support staff who teach reading and reading remediation to public and private school students. This is a three-course series and teacher should complete the entire three-course series before developing and implementing a phonetically-based reading program in their school or classroom.
As a result of this course, participants will demonstrate their ability to:
1. Describe learning to read and reading to learn.
2. Discuss important aspects of phonemic awareness instruction.
3. Identify important aspects of phonics instruction.
4. Describe important aspects of fluency instruction.
5. Note important aspects of vocabulary instruction.
6. Discuss important aspects of text comprehension.
7. Describe various aspects of teacher preparation and education in comprehension strategy instruction and reading instruction.
8. Note how computer technology can be used in reading instruction.
9. Provide details on the Consumer’s Guide to Evaluating a Core Reading Program by Simmons and Kame’enui (2003) and the Planning and Evaluation Tool for Effective Schoolwide Reading Programs by Kame’enui and Simmons (2000).
10. Describe accomplishments that can be expected for students in grades K-3.
11. Describe reading remediation guidelines and interventions for students in grades K-12.
12. Describe how to incorporate tutoring as an effective reading intervention.
13. Define important assessment terms.
14. Discuss technical adequacy, test interpretation, and assessment purposes.
15. Note how assessment fits within federally mandated programs.
16. Describe the findings of the Reading Assessment Committee (2002).
17. Discuss important ways to link assessment with instruction.
18. Detail the use of data-based decision making in classroom settings, with particular focus on various types of curriculum-based measurement procedures.
The Reading Fundamental program focuses on implementing proven methods of early reading instruction in classrooms. Through the federal reading initiative, states and districts will receive support to apply scientifically based reading research—and the proven instructional and assessment tools consistent with this research—to ensure that all children learn to read well by the end of third grade. The Reading Fundamentals program will provide the necessary assistance to states and districts to establish research-based reading programs for students in kindergarten through third grade. Funds will also support a significant increase in professional development to ensure that all teachers have the skills they need to teach these reading programs effectively. Additionally, the program provides assistance to states and districts in preparing classroom teachers to screen, identify, and eliminate reading barriers facing their students (U.S. Department of Education, 2002, p. 1).
Reading Fundamentals not only specifies that an effective reading program should include phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and text comprehension instruction, but also notes that “an effective reading program is one that coherently integrates: screening, diagnostic and classroom-based assessments that are valid and reliable” (U.S. Department of Education, 2002a, p. 2). Accountability is the cornerstone of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act (U.S. Department of Education, 2002b) that includes federal reading legislation. Throughout the NCLB legislation, reference is made to helping students meet high academic standards and to measuring what they know and can do. If we are to ensure that all children can read by grade 3, as the legislation suggests, we must provide some way of measuring children’s performance. This assessment holds us accountable for what instruction and programs we provide in the classroom.
This course will describe the elements of effective reading instruction in some detail. Two primary sources were used in developing this course. First, the National Reading Panel Report (2000) was used. This Report serves as the most current “evidence-based assessment of the scientific research literature on reading and its implications for reading instruction” (note title of the National Reading Panel Report). Second, the Put Reading First document (Armbruster, Lehr, & Osborn, 2001a), a well-respected and easy-to-read publication on the research building blocks for teaching children to read, was used. “The findings and conclusions in this publication were drawn from the 2000 report of the National Reading Panel” (Armbruster et al., p. i).
Educational assessment involves gathering, interpreting, and synthesizing information to help teachers make important decisions about student performance (Airasian, 2001). It involves everything from scores on projects, papers, and exams to how children perform on school, district, state, or national evaluations (such as standardized tests). Educational assessment can be teacher-designed or publisher/researcher-based. It can be centered on the curriculum in the school or district, or based on what children across the country should know in a particular academic subject area, such as reading.
As a student you will be expected to...
· Complete all 6 information chapters covering The Elements of Effective Reading Instruction & Assessment, showing a competent understanding of the material presented.
· Complete all 6 chapter examinations, showing a competent understanding of the material presented.
· Complete a review of any chapter on which your examination score was below 70%.
· Retake any examination, after completing an information review, to increase that examination score to a minimum of 70% (maximum of three attempts). *Please note: Minimum exam score requirements may vary by college or university; therefore, you should refer to your course addendum to determine what your minimum exam score requirements are.
· Complete all course journal article and essay writing assignments with the minimum word count shown for each writing assignment.
· Complete a course evaluation form at the end of the course.
Chapter 2: Reading to Learn & Other Important Areas of Reading Instruction
In this chapter, we focus on reading to learn or comprehension of text materials. Two elements of effective reading instruction must be conducted to improve reading comprehension in the classroom. These include vocabulary instruction and text comprehension instruction.
Chapter 4: Reading Remediation
In this chapter, we will describe interventions for students in Grades K-12. We offer important guidelines on remedial reading programs. We will also focus on the importance of tutorial programs in schools. Tutorial programs are considered one of the best ways of providing reading instruction to struggling readers.
Chapter 5: Reading Assessment
This chapter describes relevant assessment terms and purposes. It is critical to understand the types of tests available to teachers and what information can be gathered from them. It also provides important information on how assessment fits within Reading First. Additionally, this chapter details the findings of the Reading First Assessment Committee. It also provides important information on how assessment fits within Reading First. Additionally, this chapter details the findings of the Reading First Assessment Committee.
Chapter 6: Recommended Classroom Practices
This chapter lays out recommended classroom practices in terms of assessment. It describes the ever-important link between assessment and instruction. An outcomes-driven model is discussed. Additionally, the chapter explores data tracking and data-based decision making with particular focus on CBM and its derivatives (i.e., measures not based directly on a particular curriculum, but integrating CBM elements such as frequent progress monitoring). It discusses the DIBELS and MASI-R as well as teacher-developed CBM practices that can serve as criterion-referenced tests when student data are compared to performance criteria.
At the end of each course chapter, you will be expected to complete an examination designed to assess your knowledge. You may take these exams a total of three times. Your last score will save, not the highest score. After your third attempt, each examination will lock and not allow further access. The average from your exam scores will be printed on your certificate. However, this is not your final grade since your required writing assignments have not been reviewed. Exceptionally written or poorly written required writing assignments, or violation of the academic integrity policy in the course syllabus, will affect your grade. As this is a self-paced computerized instruction program, you may review course information as often as necessary. You will not be able to exit any examinations until you have answered all questions. If you try to exit the exam before you complete all questions, your information will be lost. You are expected to complete the entire exam in one sitting.
This course has two required writing components. ALL ASSIGNMENTS ARE REVIEWED. Exceptionally or poorly written assignments, or violation of the academic integrity policy noted in the course syllabus, will affect your grade. Be sure to refer to the Grading Guidelines for Writing Assignments, sent as an attachment with your original course link.
It is highly recommended that you write and save all writing assignments in an external word processing program (such as Word or Notepad), and then copy and paste these into the course program so that you will have backup copies.
To save your essays:
When you select the question or article you wish to respond to, ‘Simple Text’ or ‘Text Edit’ will launch automatically. When you are finished entering your response, simply click SAVE.
You must SAVE before you write another essay or move on to another part of the course.
1) Essay Requirement: Critical Thinking Questions
There are four Critical Thinking Questions that you must complete. You will do research on the questions and write brief essay responses relating it to the course content (and your personal experiences, when possible). To view the questions, click on REQUIRED ESSAY and choose the Critical Thinking Question that you are ready to complete; this will bring up a screen where you may enter your essay. You must write a minimum of 500 words (maximum 1,000) per essay. You may go back at any point to edit your essays, but you must be certain to click SAVE once you have completed your edits.
You must SAVE before you write another essay or move on to another part of the course.
2) Essay Requirement: Journal Articles
This task requires you to write a review of three peer-reviewed or scholarly journal articles, preferably written by an author with a Ph.D. (blogs and news articles are not acceptable) of your choice on a topic related to this course. You may choose your topic by entering the Key Words (click on the Key Words button) into a search engine of your choice (Bing, Google, Yahoo, etc.). Choose three relevant articles and write a critical summary of the information given in each article, explaining how the information relates to, supports, or refutes information given in this course. Conclude your review with your thoughts and impressions (200 words per journal article minimum, 400 words maximum). Be sure to provide the journal name, volume, date, and any other critical information to allow the instructor to access and review that article.
To write your essays, click on REQUIRED ESSAY and choose the Journal Article that you would like to complete; this will bring up a screen where you can write your review. When you are ready to stop, click SAVE. You may go back at any point to edit your essays, but you must be certain to click SAVE once you are done with your edits. For more information on the features of this assignment, please consult the HELP menu.
You must SAVE before you write another essay or move on to another part of the course.
If you have questions or problems related to the operation of this course, please try everything twice. If the problem persists please check our support pages for FAQs and known issues at www.virtualeduc.com and also the Help section of your course.
If you need personal assistance then email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (509) 891-7219. When contacting technical support, please know your course version number (it is located at the bottom left side of the Welcome Screen) and your operating system, and be seated in front of the computer at the time of your call.
Minimum Computer Requirements
Please refer to VESi’s website: www.virtualeduc.com or contact VESi if you have further questions about the compatibility of your operating system.
Refer to the addendum regarding Grading Criteria, Course Completion Information, Items to be Submitted and how to submit your completed information. The addendum will also note any additional course assignments that you may be required to complete that are not listed in this syllabus.
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Armbruster, B. B., Lehr, F., & Osborn, J. (2006c). Put reading first: The research building blocks for teaching children to read: Kindergarten through grade 3 (3rd ed.). Jessup, MD: National Institute for Literacy.
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Course content is updated every three years. Due to this update timeline, some URL links may no longer be active or may have changed. Please type the title of the organization into the command line of any Internet browser search window and you will be able to find whether the URL link is still active or any new link to the corresponding organization's web home page.
Update 9/5/14 jn