Assessments, Questioning, and RTI

A Summary of Understanding and Using Reading Assessment K-12

Chapter 3: Teacher Questioning as Assessment

Chapter three focuses on questioning. According to Afflerbach, 2012, questions help us model good assessment practices for our students and we ask questions because we want to know about our students learning and progress. The chapter explains how rigorous questioning has served two purposes throughout history: (1) using questioning as a guide to inquiry and thinking (2) using questions to determine what the person who answers the question knows (Afflerbach, 2012). Chapter three then goes on to elaborate on the characteristics of effective questioning.

According to Afflerbach, 2012, Good Questions Need To:

•Be tied to the text

•Represent an inquiry into clearly defined areas of learning

•Focus on important points of learning and/or attainable goals

•They should be aligned to the learning curriculum and standards

•Need to reflect a clear understanding of how students learn and develop

•Show how knowledge is constructed in particular content areas

Did you Know there are 4 Types of Questions?

1.) Planned: Are like it states planned ahead of time to meet goals or a school curriculum

2.) Spontaneous: Are questions prompted by a teachers observations and monitoring

3.) Convergent: Are questions where all students should have an identical or similar answer

4.) Divergent: Are questions that are the opposite of convergent

*After reading the chapter, I now have a better awareness of what kinds of questions there are and why educators ask them. I now see how they are an effective way to measure student success. Questions need to provide reliability, validity, and be useful. I am now going to really think about what I am asking my students when I am giving the questions during a discussion or after a new learning experience.

Chapter 6: Response to Early Reading Assessments

Chapter six focuses on what RTI is. According to the National Center on Response to Intervention, 2010, RTI integrates assessment and intervention within a multi-level prevention system to maximize student achievement and to reduce behavioral problems. With RTI, schools use data to identify students at risk for poor learning outcomes, monitor student progress, provide evidence-based interventions, and adjust the intensity and nature of those interventions depending on a student's responsiveness, and identify students with learning disabilities and other disabilities.

The chapter then goes on to explain several reading assessments and how they have "consequences and usefulness." The 2 reading assessments defined are:

1.) OSELA (Observation Survey): Is a survey given primarily to kindergarten and grade 1 students. It is a one-on-one assessment given to students. It usually takes about an hour a student. The items assessed using the OSELA are: running records, letter identification, concepts about print, word tests, writing vocabulary, hearing and recording sounds in words. According the Afflerbach, The OSELA is individually administered, and the individual observation done well yields information that describes how a student is progressing. Afflerbach speaks highly of it saying, it has a positive consequence of encouraging instruction that is informed by the detailed descriptions of individual students' actual needs.

2.) DIBELS Next (Dynamic Indicators of Early Literacy Skills): Measures many skills related to early reading development. It measures: (a) first sound fluency (b) letter naming fluency (c) phoneme segmentation fluency (d) nonsense word fluency (e) oral reading fluency. According to Afflerbach, 2012, the assessment can be easily administer by any school personnel with limited training. DIBELS is also scored via technology so it is easy to assess and administer. The timed manner and limited comprehension assessments are a consequence this assessment faces.

Questions I Still Have:

•My school uses AIMSweb a similar progressing monitoring tool to DIBELS. I find it has its usefulness and consequences, it allows me to easily group students on the RTI pyramid, but I do not always find my results to be accurate. As a result I end up giving students the OSELA. Do you think it is a good idea to use both assessments? Am I wasting my time and other students learning time administering both?

•What is the most common reading assessment administered in the United States?


Afflerbach, P. (2012). Understanding and using reading assessment k-12. (2nd ed.). Newark, DE: International Reading Association.

National Center on Response to Intervention. (2010). Essential components of RTI-a closer look at response to intervention. Washing, D.C: National Center on Response to Intervention, Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education