Academic journal article School Psychology Review

Effects of Reading Curriculum-Based Measurement (R-CBM) Teacher Feedback in General Education Classrooms

Academic journal article School Psychology Review

Effects of Reading Curriculum-Based Measurement (R-CBM) Teacher Feedback in General Education Classrooms

Article excerpt

Abstract. This study examined the effects of teacher feedback from Reading Curriculum-Based Measurement (R-CBM) progress results for low-performing students in general education classrooms. Participants included 44 second-grade teachers and 184 students in their low reading groups. After 5 weeks of progress monitoring, teachers in the two experimental groups were given progress results of (a) a single student in the reading group or (b) all students in the reading group. Teachers in the control group received no progress monitoring feedback. Progress feedback did not affect subsequent progress as hypothesized. However, students' reading progress in all three groups improved reliably during the second half of the study, suggesting some reactive benefits of progress monitoring. The need to increase the type and quality of teacher feedback and to support teachers to use progress monitoring data in general education settings to make instructional changes is discussed.

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Curriculum-Based Measurement (CBM) is a set of standardized procedures for collecting student data in the basic skill areas of reading, mathematics computation, spelling, and written expression (e.g., Deno, 1985, 1986, 2003). Although CBM procedures can be applied to any of the basic skill areas, its reading measure (R-CBM) has received the most attention in the research literature and the public schools. R-CBM requires that students read passages of connected, meaningful text aloud for 1 minute. The number of words read correctly is counted and used as the primary datum. Errors are also summed and can be used as secondary information. R-CBM has substantial empirical support for its validity as an overall indicator of general reading competence, including comprehension (e.g., Fuchs, Fuchs, Hosp, & Jenkins, 2001; Fuchs, Fuchs, & Maxwell, 1988; Shinn, Good, Knutson, Tilly, & Collins, 1992). Use of R-CBM originally was directed at progress monitoring of students in special education (e.g., Deno, 1985) and in problem solving (Shinn, 2002). Increasingly, R-CBM has been of interest to general education teachers and school administrators, in part, because of its prevention focus (Shinn, Shinn, Hamilton, & Clarke, 2002) and its consistently strong relationship to statewide, high-stakes reading tests (e.g., Crawford, Tindal, & Steiber, 2001; McGlinchey & Hixson, 2004). Given its unique combination of efficiency, low cost, and validity with respect to important educational outcomes, R-CBM is a worthwhile indicator for judging the effectiveness of overall reading instruction and intervention support.

All CBM procedures, including R-CBM, were developed specifically for use in formative evaluation, a process for evaluating the effectiveness of instructional programs for individual students (Deno, Mirkin, & Chiang, 1982). After more than three decades of research, R-CBM continues to hold up against established criteria for effective measurement systems used in formative evaluation. The criteria include (a) meeting traditional psychometric standards for test reliability and validity; (b) having the capacity to model growth over time; (c) demonstrating sensitivity to instructional modifications over a relatively short period of time; (d) independence of any specific instructional program or technique; (e) providing specific information for instructional planning; and (f) being simple, cost-effective, and efficient enough to be implemented without significantly distracting teaching efforts (Fuchs & Fuchs, 1999). Most recently, R-CBM was judged to meet the scientific standards for frequent progress monitoring by the U.S. Department of Education, National Center on Student Progress Monitoring (National Center on Student Progress Monitoring, 2005).

Formative Evaluation

Formative evaluation involves collecting student performance data on an ongoing basis so that timely program changes can be made while instruction is taking place, instead of waiting until the end of an instructional period, such as an entire school year, to evaluate student learning (i. …

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