Sep 14, 2010 by Melissa Agocs

Every spring, the Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests, abbreviated CRCT, are administered to students in Georgia. The CRCT is designed to measure how well students acquire the skills and knowledge described in the Georgia Performance Standards. Students are tested in Reading, English Language Arts and Mathematics. This summary will concentrate on the Reading results. It is given every spring to all students in grades 1-8 and the students included in this study were first through eighth graders.

Students who used the Fast ForWord products generally started with the Fast ForWord Language or Fast ForWord Literacy products. In Clarke County School District in Georgia, during the 2007 – 2008 school year, a group of students started on the Fast ForWord Reading products, progressing as far as the Fast ForWord Reading Level 3 product. On average, students used the products for 60 – 70 days during a 6 month period.

A longitudinal study is a type of study that follows the same subjects over time. A longitudinal analysis may include baseline performance for a period before the intervention, as well as performance changes during the intervention period. It may also include follow up performance data, showing whether performance drops, is maintained at the new level, or continues to improve, when participants are no longer receiving the intervention.

The first wave of Fast ForWord participants at Clarke County started using the products between the 2006 and 2007 tests and made statistically significant improvements on the spring 2007 CRCT with continued improvements in 2008.

Students in the second wave started using the products between the 2007 and 2008 tests and made statistically significant improvements on the spring 2008 CRCT.

The third group served as the comparison group and did not use the products until after the 2008 test. The students who used the Fast ForWord products made more improvements in their reading achievement, crossing the proficiency threshold, compared to the students who did not use the products. In fact, 40% of the participants who were not proficient in 2006 reached proficiency in 2007 compared to 27% of the non-proficient students who did not use products.

For more information, please see the Educator Briefingand Full Reporton this study as well as any of our 200+ additional reports on Fast ForWord results. If you have questions about any of our research studies, please contact us