I'd like to add to what Roslyn Bethke wrote about
the Nelson Denny.

We used the new N-D's briefly to our highest
reading level, but found that the information we
received was not worth the class time and
trouble.  It does have extended time scoring
capability for ESL, LD, returning students.  Of
course, then the scoring is even more

However, our frustration is that the test doesn't give us
enough information for really poor readers since it
won't go lower than 4.0 grade level.

I agree.  I have additional concerns about using a
group, norm-referenced test for examining
individuals.  Didn't our testing courses advise
that that was a misuse of such tests?  I think we
always have to ask ourselves, "Why are we
testing?"  Individual student progress, program

We would like to find a short test that we could give
after (or before) the Nelson-Denny to those students
whose initial college assessment places them into our
lowest level(s) of reading classes.

Does anyone have a suggestion for a simple
paper-pencil test that checks comprehension by using
a cloze procedure after one or two sentences? I'm
thinking of a test similar to the pretest in SRA's old kits
Reading for Understanding. It came with cards having
ten statements on each.

Any suggestions are welcome!

OK.  The Revrac is a quick (7-minute) paper and
pencil test using cloze (or maze--choice of two
items) written by Ron Carver, UMKC.  (Revrac
Pub., Inc. 207 W. 116th St., Kansas City, MO

Tactics by Olive Niles has both a diagnostic and
an evaluation test (pre/post).  It's old, and it isn't
quick, but there are parts I like.  The first seven
sections together is the single best predictor of
success in my lowest level course that I've found

Does anyone use the computer tests --Compass,
Accuplacer ?

In recent years I've been leaning towards more
pre- and post- testing that seems closer to
me to what they may have to do in class and that
I'm actually teaching.  I've been giving a 10-15
minute reading passage, telling them that I'll pick
it up and have them write as much of the
important information that they can remember.
Then they answer 10 multiple choice questions.  I
compare their summaries to those of "expert"
readers who had done the same thing; it gives me
a quick snapshot of where they're at and helps me
determine how well they are able to differentiate
between levels of importance.  But I, too am still
struggling with this and with the vagaries and
complications of assessing reading in general.
What is it we're actually looking for?  And if we
think we know that, can it be done well, or at all?

Susan Clark
Met. Comm. Coll. - Longview
500 Longview Road, Lee's Summit, MO 64081
[log in to unmask]  816-672-2075