Recent educational reform gave birth to accountability testing and development of student sub-groups meant to track gaps in achievement. Because of the high-stakes nature of these assessments, educators have sought efficient progress monitoring tools. Oral reading fluency’s link to overall reading success has made it a desirable means of measuring growth. This link is well researched with native English speakers but less researched with English learners. This research seeks to determine if the commercially-produced oral reading fluency suite of assessments, DIBELS, can predict reading success on the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCAs) in English learners to the same degree as with native English speakers. Additionally, the research sought to find if a correlation could be made between the MCAs and the WIDA ACCESS test (Minnesota’s language proficiency assessment). Archival student data from a rural Minnesota school district was analyzed using Pearson Product Moment Correlation to determine if a correlation exists between the DIBELS suite of assessments, the MCA in Reading, and the WIDA ACCESS. In addition, regressions were used to determine the predictive power of DIBELS for native English speakers and English learners. Results showed the correlation between DIBELS and MCA was greater for native English speakers than for English learners. It was also more predictive of reading success for native English speakers than for English learners. Also, the ACCESS reading subtest showed the strongest correlation to the MCA in reading. Overall, until English learners reach proficiency in English, their assessment results are less valid than for native English speakers.
Date of Degree
Doctor of Education (EdD)
Program of Study
Schultz, K. (2022). The ability of DIBELS to predict proficiency on the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment and the WIDA ACCESS for ELLs [Master’s thesis, Minnesota State University, Mankato]. Cornerstone: A Collection of Scholarly and Creative Works for Minnesota State University, Mankato. https://cornerstone.lib.mnsu.edu/etds/1247/
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