Reading With Comprehension
English: % of students who by the end of Grade 2 can read with comprehension and speed of 45 words per minute in language of instruction
French: % d'élèves qui à la fin de la seconde année peuvent lire, avec compréhension et fluidité, 45 mots par minute dans la langue d'enseignement
Czech: % studentů, kteří na konci druhého ročníku čtou ve vyučovacím jazyce s porozuměním a rychlostí 45 slov za minutu
What is its purpose?
The ability to read and understand simple text is one of the most fundamental skills. Yet in many countries the majority of students do not understand the meaning of the texts they read even after years of schooling. This outcome level indicator measures the proportion of school children who, after 2 years of schooling, are able to read with comprehension. It also serves as an accurate indicator of the education system's effectiveness.
How to Collect and Analyse the Required Data
Use Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA) to collect data for this indicator. EGRA is an internationally recognized RTI/USAID-developed tool for measuring reading skills in young students:
> EGRA is a brief but thorough oral assessment administered individually to randomly selected students that accurately evaluates students’ knowledge of foundational reading.
> The assessment is used during the baseline stage of a programme for assessing foundational reading levels of children. This provides a measure of how many children are reading at the appropriate grade level. The same test is administered at the end (final evaluation) to assess the impact of the programme. Students tested at the onset of an intervention and subsequent to the instructional intervention would be expected to demonstrate improvement over time.
> At each testing, the assessment is undertaken with a sample of children currently at the end of Grade 2 (or early Grade 3) – not with the same children.
> The tool is administered, by a trained enumerator, to each child individually. It takes about 5 minutes to complete. The details of the procedure and the forms can be found in EGRA Field Guide.
> Sample size and selection: To obtain representative data for your target school, you will need to randomly select students to take part in the assessment. Read the details on sampling in EGRA Field Guide and consult your Education and/or M&E Advisor.
> The enumerators can either record the results on paper forms or electronically in tablets.
1) EGRA is fully dependent on enumerators' skills. Plan for 2-day practical training for enumerators to ensure data consistency.
2) The indicator is measured “by the end of grade 2”. This means that the assessment must be timed correctly to be at the end of Grade 2 or at the beginning of Grade 3, depending on the timing chosen for the assessment. Children will need to have had two years of learning, or as close as possible.
3) Why is 45 words per minute the benchmark? People must read roughly at least a word per 1-1.5 second (45-60 words per minute) to understand a sentence of about seven words. If they read more slowly, they forget the beginning of a sentence by the time they get to the end. Therefore, they cannot answer simple comprehension questions that link various facts together.
4) In new contexts, the pre-testing and contextualisation are necessary. The tool should be adjusted and tested to suit local student levels and local culture within the area.
5) You might also want to consider using Early Grade Mathematics Assessment (EGMA) for measuring students’ numeracy skills with an emphasis on numbers and operations.
6) Disaggregate the data by sex and specific vulnerable groups, such as minorities or children with disability.
Access Additional Guidance
- RTI International (2016) Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA) Toolkit - Long Version (.pdf)
- RTI International (2014) Early Grade Mathematics Assessment (EGMA) Toolkit (.pdf)
- World Vision (0) Early Grade Reading Assessment - Field Guide (.pdf)