York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension: Early Reading and Passage Reading Primary (YARC Primary) and York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension: Passage Reading Secondary (YARC Secondary) come with a free online Score Conversion Tool. By inputting pupil details and raw score results into a simple template, all converted scores are computed immediately resulting in a simple, one page report. There is a section for teachers and practitioners to include comments and observations too. Each programme has a help section that gives more information – for example about saving and correcting reports that have been generated.
The program automatically calculates ability scores, standard age scores and age equivalent scores for each part of YARC Primary and YARC Secondary that has been administered. This means that more time can be given to administering the assessments and reviewing performance rather than spent looking up tables of data. There are three versions of the YARC Score Conversion Tool; Early Reading, Passage Reading Primary and Passage Reading Secondary.
Utilising the YARC Score Conversion Tool couldn't be more straightforward - to access the tool simply click on the relevant Score Conversion Tool below. Once you have gained access, firstly input pupil details along with the name of the school and the assessor. Then input details of tests taken and raw scores and press "Create Report". The score conversion will be carried out automatically and instantly, generating a comprehensive report.
Click on the links below to download Sample Reports generated from the YARC Score Conversion Tool.
Because the four tests that make up YARC Early Reading may be used in different combinations and for repeat testing, you may want to screen your pupils early in the autumn term using the Sound Deletion and Sound Isolation assessments. This will give you a good idea about your pupils’ ability to manipulate and isolate sounds within words (real and made-up) – important precursors to successful decoding. To tackle Early Word Recognition and Letter Sound assessments pupils will have to have undertaken some formal instruction using phonics so, depending on any pre-learning, you may wish to delay using these until the end of the term or even in the second half of the year.
The pupil record form allows each pupil to be tested up to three times and a gap of around twelve weeks should be left between testing.
Core letter test is based on the phonic learning that represents the introduction to reading for many young children. It is a shortened version (does not include all letter sounds) for quick administration and provides an overview rather than the comprehensive assessment of the extended test.
Word Recognition is built up from simple, easily decodable words to irregular and ‘tricky’ words. All pupils start with 'cat' and keep going until they make 10 errors - this prevents stress from too many incorrect attempts. A child with minimal word reading ability will register a score on this test.
Yes, as long as the gap between the two sessions is not too long, administering passages over, say, a week would be fine.
Children develop their skills in readings in various ways and a reading scheme or story book with illustrations can help in this development by giving clues to what is in the text. However, to gain the best assessment of a pupil’s reading it is now recognised that such clues are inappropriate and an assessment of reading text unconfounded by illustrations is best.
It was decided that it would be more natural for secondary students to read silently rather than aloud to the teacher, which is something associated with primary school. If students need to be assessed using the Supplementary Passages (either as indicated by their Single Word Reading Test score or because they have clear reading difficulty), these are read aloud and therefore the error analysis can be carried out.
YARC Secondary includes a test of reading fluency where students do read aloud, are timed and errors are counted. During the standardisation of the passages a high correlation was found between scores for reading fluency and those for rate of reading calculated from the silent passage reading (see tables below).
|Correlation||Reading Fluency Level 1|
|Reading rate Level 1A||0.67|
|Reading rate Level 1B||0.68|
|Reading rate Supplementary Passages||0.72|
|Correlation||Reading Fluency Level 2|
|Reading rate Level 2A||0.57|
|Reading rate Level 2B||0.59|
If a student reads very quickly or very slowly, it is advisable to administer the fluency test as a second line check.
The inclusion of a summarisation task in YARC Secondary is unique. Summarisation is a skill that students at secondary school will need to hone as they progress towards important public examinations at 16, 18 and at University. The ability to read a text and extract the key information regardless of genre is vital to understanding successfully a whole range of material as well as to the correct interpretation of questions and tasks which will, increasingly, require students to deal with a range of sources.
During standardisation it became apparent that summarisation as a task could be challenging for even those students with average and above average comprehension skills. Summarisation is reported separately from comprehension so that teachers can examine profiles of strength and weakness.
YARC Secondary includes a fully standardised version of GL Assessment’s Single Word Reading Test which may be used to pinpoint which level of passage should be administered. Students with a reading age of six to ten years (SWRT raw score 11-42) should be given the Supplementary Passages 1 and 2 which have been standardised on the secondary sample. This will give standard scores for accuracy, rate and comprehension, the latter based on an extended set of questions, including summarisation.
If it is necessary to re-test these students, the Teacher Guide includes photocopy masters of Supplementary Passages 3 and 4. These are equivalent forms to Supplementary Passages 1 and 2 but have not been standardised on the secondary sample but will yield an age equivalent score for accuracy, rate and comprehension. This is often enough to check that progress is being made.
As students progress they can move to Level 1 of the secondary passages which is accessible to older students with a reading age of 10 years and above.
Great care needs to be taken when assessing students with English as an additional language. As YARC is an individual assessment it is very suitable to this purpose. Generally, EAL students will experience difficulty with vocabulary and comprehension, particularly inference. The profile produced by YARC will enable strengths and weaknesses to be examined and progress tracked over time. The Single Word Reading Test will give a measure of word level reading and indicate the level of entry to YARC.
EAL students were included in the standardisation sample (N = 89). Analysis of their results in the light of the first language English speakers offers some guidance on what to expect from YARC. Single word reading standard scores are on average 3 points lower; reading comprehension standard scores are between 6 and 10 points lower; reading rate standard scores are between 3 and 7 points lower; and reading fluency standard scores are on average 6 points lower.