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Hello. This presentation will review achievement gains made at the Bulloch County Schools in Georgia after students used the Fast ForWord® products. This was an independent study conducted by Dr. Jody Woodrum, an Assistant Superintendent at the district.
The Bulloch County Schools started using the Fast ForWord products at selected schools during the 2007-2008 school year. The district’s focus was on students close to proficiency in reading or language arts. In the fall of 2009, the Langston Chapel Middle School expanded its implementation to all sixth graders, regardless of ability level. This summary is about these sixth graders.
The students in this study used various Fast ForWord products, including the Fast ForWord Literacy, Fast ForWord Literacy Advanced, Fast ForWord Reading Prep, and Fast ForWord Reading Level 1 – 5 products. The participating school’s Fast ForWord Participation and Attendance were routinely considered “Gold Cap,” which is a high standard to strive for and shows that the school was adhering to the protocol.
Study participants were evaluated using the Measures of Academic Progress, abbreviated as MAP. Developed by the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA), the MAP are state-aligned, computerized adaptive tests that accurately reflect the instructional level of each student and measure growth over time. The MAP are appropriate for students in grades 2 through 10 and are available to evaluate student achievement in a variety of subject areas including reading, language arts, math, and science.
The MAP uses a measure of improvement called the Growth National Percentile Rank, which is a percentile rank of growth relative to “academic peers” – students in similar grades and at similar achievement levels. On average, Fast ForWord participants made gains on the MAP, and for students who made gains, the gains were very large, corresponding to high Growth National Percentile Ranks. The next two graphs look at the Reading and English Language Arts results more closely.
Overall, 64% of participants from both groups of students – on and above grade level, and below grade level – increased their percentile rank on the Reading portion of the MAP. For the students who made gains, the gains corresponded to the 98th percentile, which is considered very large and exceeded the expected improvement on the Reading component.
On the English Language Arts component of the MAP, 77% of participants made gains. Once again, the improvement of both groups of Fast ForWord participants exceeded the expected improvement and the gains that were achieved were substantial – at the 99th percentile.
Analyses by the staff at Bulloch County indicated that high gains were seen regardless of the students’ prior achievement levels, and regardless of the highest Fast ForWord product completed.
Thank you for your time. This video was a brief summary of the rigorous study from Bulloch County. For further detail, please reference Dr. Woodrum’s full report on the Scientific Learning website at www.scientificlearning.com/woodrum.
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