Curriculum and Instruction
English Language Arts (ELA)
Gina DeLorenzo, Curriculum Coordinator firstname.lastname@example.org
Sherry Copley, Curriculum Coordinator email@example.com
Progress Monitoring with Oral Reading Fluency:
Words Correct Per Minute (WCPM) – the “canary in the coal mine” for identifying issues with overall reading
While it may be surprising that a one-minute assessment can be so informative, WCPM has been shown, in both theoretical and empirical research, to serve as an accurate and powerful indicator of overall reading competence — especially through its strong correlation with comprehension. Its validity and reliability have been well established in a body of research extending over the past 25 years (Fuchs et al., 2001; Shinn, 1998).
To calculate the WCPM score, the examiner subtracts the total number of errors from the total number of words read in one minute.
Hasbrouck, Jan. "Understanding and Assessing Fluency." Reading Rockets. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Feb. 2016. <http://www.readingrockets.org/article/understanding-and-assessing-fluency>. Reading Rockets is funded by a major grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs.
For screening, passages are selected from text at the student's grade level.
For diagnosing, passages are selected at the student's instructional level (which may be lower than her grade level). In this context, instructional level text is challenging but manageable, with the reader making errors on no more than one in 10 words (i.e., the reader is successful with 90 percent of the text) (Partnership for Reading, 2001).
For progress monitoring, passages are selected at a student's individually determined goal level. For example, if an 8th-grade student's instructional level is at the 5th-grade level, the teacher may conduct the progress monitoring assessments using passages at the 6th-grade level.
Many educators have found WCPM to be a better tool for monitoring students' progress than traditional standardized measures that typically are time-consuming, expensive, only administered infrequently, and of limited instructional utility (Good, Simmons, and Kame'enui, 2001; Tindal and Marston, 1990).
Hasbrouck, Jan. "Screening, Diagnosing, and Progress Monitoring for Fluency: The Details." Reading Rockets. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Feb. 2016. <http://www.readingrockets.org/article/screening-diagnosing-and-progress-monitoring-fluency-details>.
Links to norms:
For more information on oral reading fluency measures, click on the links below: