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NASP Home NASP Publications School Psychology Review (SPR) Volume 36 Issue 1 (2007) Reading at the Frustration, Instructi...
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Volume 36, Issue 1 (2007)

Reading at the Frustration, Instructional, and Independent Levels: The Effects on Students' Reading Comprehension and Time on Task

pp. 159—166

Abstract. The current study replicated Gickling and Armstrong (1978) by using curriculum-based assessment for instructional design to match reading materials to skill levels of three third-graders who were struggling readers with low levels of on-task behavior. Difficulty levels of the reading passages were grouped according to ratios of known and unknown words into three categories: frustration (80–90% known), instructional (93–97% known), and independent levels (100% known). A single-subject, multi-element design was used to examine the effects of these reading activities on individual students’ time on task and reading comprehension. Although within-subject variability in responding was observed, results suggested that students demonstrated improved time on task while completing tasks at the instructional level, compared to tasks at the frustration and independent levels. Comprehension was highest at the independent level and lowest at the frustration level. These findings were consistent with but not as robust as those reported by Gickling and Armstrong.

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