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Ages: Grade 7
Testing Time: 3 minutes
Administration: Individual or group
The Test of Silent Reading Efficiency and Comprehension (TOSREC) is a brief, group- or individually administered test of reading that assesses silent reading of connected text for comprehension. The test can be used for screening and progress monitoring, with multiple forms available at each grade level to facilitate progress monitoring. The test can also be used by clinicians and researchers as a brief test of reading comprehension.
Description of the TOSREC
The TOSREC has four test forms. It was normed on a nationally-representative sample of 3,523 individuals.
The TOSREC measures silent reading efficiency (i.e., speed and accuracy) and comprehension. Respondents are given 3 minutes to read and verify the truthfulness of as many sentences as possible.
For each grade level, Form A was normed in the fall, Form B in the winter, and Form C in the spring. This provides norms specific to the time in the school year the TOSREC is administered. An Optional Form O is available for use anytime throughout the year. The TOSREC provides raw scores, indexes (a type of standard score), and percentiles. It can be administered by classroom teachers, reading coaches, special education teachers, school psychologists, speech and language therapists, and other professionals who have received some training in standardized test administration. The test can be group-administered to a classroom or other groupings of students or adults, and it can also be administered individually.
The TOSREC provides five advantages over oral reading fluency tests for screening and progress monitoring because of its format of reading connected text silently for comprehension.
- Group administration is possible, which dramatically improves efficiency and cost effectiveness. This savings in efficiency and cost effectiveness is particularly important for school-wide screening and progress monitoring.
- The kind of reading that is assessed by the TOSREC has greater ecological validity than do oral reading fluency tasks. The ultimate goal of reading instruction is to help students read silently and efficiently for comprehension. Important differences exist between silent reading and oral reading. For example, reading rate is substantially slower for oral reading than for silent reading. Vocalization also requires additional effort and provides a source of aural input that must be processed concurrently with reading. This occupies working memory that otherwise could be devoted to comprehension.
- Comprehension is assessed explicitly and affects scoring directly. Although some oral reading fluency tasks involve asking comprehension questions to encourage readers to read for comprehension as opposed to merely call out the words, comprehension performance does not impact scoring directly. Performance on oral reading fluency tests usually is reported as words read correctly per minute, with no adjustment depending on whether or not comprehension questions are answered correctly. For the TOSREC, failure to correctly verify the meaning of a sentence impacts scoring directly.
- Nationally representative norms are available. Although empirically established benchmarks are available for some oral reading fluency tasks, nationally representative standard scores and percentiles, collected for a standardized set of passages, typically are not available. The TOSREC provides both standard scores and percentiles along with standardized directions and forms, thereby making it possible to compare an individual's performance on the TOSREC to national norms.
- Embarrassment on the part of poor readers is avoided. In practice, some poor readers, especially older poor readers or English language learners, are embarrassed at having to read aloud in the presence of an examiner to the point that their performance is affected and the testing situation is uncomfortable. The TOSREC avoids the embarrassment experienced by some respondents associated with reading aloud.
Aspects of Reading Measured by the TOSREC
The TOSREC measures the efficiency with which connected text can be read silently for comprehension. As such, it provides a snapshot of an individual's ability to perform the end product of actually comprehending print, as opposed to measuring only a single component of reading such as word-level decoding or fluent word recognition. The TOSREC requires fluent recognition of printed words, ability to process grade-level appropriate sentence structure, knowledge of grade-level-appropriate vocabulary, adequate working memory capacity to process realistic sentences, the ability to make appropriate inferences, and possession of relevant background knowledge.
Uses of the TOSREC
The TOSREC was designed for multiple purposes including efficient and cost-effective (a) screening for the identification of poor readers, (b) group progress monitoring of all readers, and (c) assessment by clinicians and researchers of silent reading of connected text for comprehension.
EACH COMPLETE TOSREC KIT INCLUDES: Examiners Manual with Scoring Keys CD, 25 Profile Record Forms, and 25 each of Student Response Booklets Form A, Form B, Form C, and Form O, all in a sturdy storage box. ©2010
TOSREC for Other Grades: