Amira is a comprehensive, multi-faceted, reliable, and valid assessment of reading comprehension. The test reflects a consensus of state requirements for testing reading mastery and covers the key dimensions of reading ability highlighted by Scarborough's Rope:
Key Elements Used To Measure Reading Comprehension
Dimensions of Reading Comprehension & Mastery
Accepted Approach For Assessment
What forms of Amira's Assessment include this?
Read & Respond to Questions
Listen & Respond to Questions
Fluent Word Recognition (WIF)
Oral Reading (ORF)
The Amira Benchmark assessment is designed to accurately gauge reading comprehension and mastery by:
Using multiple measures consistent with long established psychometric principles around the superiority of employing discrete but correlated measures
Employing direct observation of the task being measured, rather than indirection
Utilizing absolutely consistent, automated protocols, and scoring to ensure reliability
Incorporating all of the elements of mastery identified by the Science of Reading as foundational to reading ability
The following sections correspond to each of the Key Elements in the table above. Each element is supported by one or more tasks.
One of the best means of testing for reading comprehension and reading mastery is direct observation of a student’s ability to answer questions pertaining to connected text. Amira does just this.
The Reading Comprehension Task
The reading comprehension task is an extension of the oral reading (Benchmark) task. Amira follows the student’s oral reading with a set of questions pertaining to the proffered text. In order to minimize assessment time, the Reading Comprehension questions piggyback on the Benchmark or Oral Reading Fluency (ORF) task.
The student is presented with a set of short text passages. The student reads these passages and then Amira presents up to 5 cloze questions about the passage.
An additional approach is to measure listening comprehension. The research shows that while reading and listening comprehension abilities are related, they are distinct skills.
The Listening Comprehension Task
In this task, the student listens to a video of a story, spoken by an actor. The student then responds to questions capturing their ability to re-tell what they've heard.
In both tasks, Amira poses N questions, where N is a function of the student’s grade level and district configuration. Questions are typically posed in cloze format, but other formats are also supported.
The Oral Reading Fluency Task
A mass of research has documented the very strong correlation between fluency and comprehension. While Amira uses the explicit measures of comprehension described, comprehension scoring also reflects the student's ability to read smoothly and correctly. The specific measure employed is Words Correct Per Minute.
Reading Comprehension Reporting
Amira's Data Dashboard reports on Reading Comprehension and Word Recognition at the class, grade, school, and district level. Reading comprehension in-app reporting is on the short term roadmap and will be available soon.
See What's new in Amira? for updates on our next release.