Oct 8, 2010 by Melissa Agocs

During the 2009-2010 school year, the St. Mary Parish Public School System was interested in evaluating the impact of the Fast ForWord® products on the reading achievement of gifted and talented students. Students who were part of this group were in the 2nd through 9th grades and their average grade level was early 4th grade. Even though their average actual grade level was early 4th grade, the group was reading at a grade level of mid-5 thgrade, demonstrating their gifted and talented status.

Students started on the Fast ForWord Language or Fast ForWord Literacy products, using the 40- or 50-Minute protocols. Students then progressed through the Fast ForWord Reading products. Some also used Scientific Learning’s Reading Assistant™ software. Students were pre- and post-tested using Reading Progress Indicator, a computerized assessment used to rapidly measure a student’s reading skills, including phonemic awareness, decoding, vocabulary, and comprehension.

The students made gains on Reading Progress Indicator, significantly improving their grade-equivalent scores from a reading grade level of mid-5th grade to mid-7th grade. Before these students started on the products, they had an average actual grade level of early 4th grade. These results show that the students were advanced prior to using Fast ForWord products but also that they were able to benefit, suggesting that students of various levels can show benefit from the products.