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Burt reading age test.... Any views?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by Ladykaza, Nov 8, 2011.

  1. Ladykaza

    Ladykaza Senior commenter

    Hi folks,

    We are looking for a quick, easy to administer, decoding test suitable for yr 1 through to year 6 - preferably free! Someone has recommended the Burt test. I know it's old , last revised 1974, so I wondered if anyone had used it. How accurate did you find the reading ages etc? Any wise words gratefully received.
  2. Ladykaza

    Ladykaza Senior commenter

    Thanks for your views so far folks. We have a comprehensive system of assessment, both formative and summative for assessing children's reading, particularly for the complex comprehension and interpretive skills which have already been discussed. These, as you might expect, are different across the age ranges in order to be most effective. What we have been asked to think about, however , is a simple comparative test to show progression across the years in decoding. The most important purpose is to pick up children in KS2 who have yet to properly master decoding skills in an environment where the focus is moving towards higher order reading skills. Whilst, as you rightly say, the number itself is pretty meaningless, we are looking for a test which we can administer throughout the primary phase to show progression. Whatever you may think about number crunching and data , it is the world in which we live, so if we need some numbers I would like to find a system which is not a drain on resources, time or money, and might prove useful in some small way.
  3. mystery10

    mystery10 Occasional commenter

    The test to which you refer does sound very old. Can you find a more up to date free one on the web? I think some of the dyslexia websites have free reading tests on them?
    Have all the children been taught via synthetic phonics? Maybe you could test an improvement in phonic decoding by using the tests in the RWI phonics handbook which are used to determine where in the scheme to place a child? Children come off the scheme when they can work their way satisfactorily to the end of the phonic decoding test ....... approx level 3c. So maybe that would help you identify children who need more phonics input to improve their decoding. Then once they had mastered the final level of that you could do your rough and ready reading age tests as a partial indicator of progress?
  4. Burt works well to give a starting place for a child you have no data for. It is not suitable for a definitive reading level. You would then have to do a running record on a text or some other test that requires comprehension.
    I find that there are at least a third of my class each year that can decode fine but have no idea what they are reading.
    quick and easy for reading assessment don't go together. It all depends on the passage selected and prior knowledge of the vocabulary etc.
  5. Not free, but a useful standardised single word reading test that is easily administered which measures progression in phonic skills and is aligned with Letters and Sounds is the WRAPs test. It can be used to give a 'reading age' and can also be used diagnostically to analyse reading errors. The tester says the target word and the pupil selects the word from a group of similar words. I use this with the SEN pupils I teach. It can be delivered to groups of pupls.
  6. Teachersgem

    Teachersgem New commenter

    I think the Burt reading test is ok. I'm pretty certain someone at the Reading Reform Foundation suggested it to me a few years ago. If they recommend it then it is good. You could ask them on their forum. Their are many experts on there who I know would give you sound advice: www.rrf.org.uk Click on visit in the top right corner
  7. Ladykaza

    Ladykaza Senior commenter

    Thanks for all your wise words folks.

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