Reading Horizons Elevate v7 Software Release
FULL LIST OF UPDATES
NEW ASSESSMENT SYSTEM
Four all new computer-administered assessments allow the software to more deeply differentiate instruction to match each student’s needs—increasing engagement and expediting progress:
The Phonics Screener determines whether a student has gaps in his/her foundational reading skills and needs the full scope of Reading Horizons instruction, or whether a student has mastered foundational skills and needs to focus on building reading fluency and comprehension in the Reading Library section of the software.
The Phonics Screener has students spell 42 words that collectively embody each of the phonics skills taught and practiced in Reading Horizons Elevate. If a student can spell a word on demand, the student shows evidence of mastery in the phonics skills embedded in that word. If students misspell three words in a row (misspelling all of the phonics skills embedded in each word), the assessment ends.
If a student passes the assessment with 95% or higher, the “Library only” track is triggered since the student has already mastered foundational reading skills. In this case, students do not receive instruction. Rather, at the completion of this assessment students take the Reading Library Assessment to acquire a Lexile® reader measure, and then go directly to the Reading Library where they can read passages that match and stretch their current reading ability. After students earn 20 points in the Reading Library (or the points required according to the adjustable settings in the administration system), additional passages are unlocked. If a student’s score falls below 95%, the student receives instruction that fills in the gaps through a targeted lesson track.
Reading Library Assessment
The Reading Library Assessment was created in partnership with MetaMetrics® and is powered by the Lexile® Framework for Reading. This assessment was developed to promote each student's reading comprehension by monitoring his/her Lexile measure throughout Reading Horizons Elevate software instruction.
This is an adaptive, multiple-choice assessment. Students read a short reading passage, followed by a fill-in-the-blank comprehension question with four options (A, B, C, and D). There are four different versions of the test (four different item banks) of differing levels (levels 1–4). All students begin with test items from the level 2 item bank. Depending on students’ responses, the test will either move to higher-level/more advanced test items (levels 3 and 4) or lower-level/less advanced test items (level 1) and continue to adapt according to students’ responses.
If students miss three questions in a row, the assessment ends. At the end of the assessment, students receive a Lexile® reader measure. Lexile-leveled passages that match the students’ reader measures will be unlocked.
This assessment is administered three times throughout the program. The assessment is initially administered following the Phonics Screener and preceding the Diagnostic Assessment (unless the Phonics Screener is passed with 95%, causing the Diagnostic Assessment to be overridden) to serve as a benchmark and to unlock reading passages at the appropriate level. The second iteration of the assessment is administered to monitor progress in the middle of the Reading Horizons lessons (in the middle of Chapter 4). And the final Reading Library Assessment is given at the end of the program to highlight a student’s complete Lexile gain from the program.
The Diagnostic Assessment ensures each student is focusing on the skills that will help him/her make the most progress in reading by prescribing a targeted lesson track for each student.
To test the depth of instruction students need for each lesson taught in Reading Horizons Elevate, the assessment uses four question types, depending on student performance:
First, students are asked to spell a word. If they spell the word correctly, they move on to the next word.
If they spell the word wrong, they are taken to a fill-in-the-blank question that focuses on the same skill. If they answer correctly, they are taken to the next word and asked to provide the proper spelling.
If they answer incorrectly, the narrator reads a nonsense word and they are asked to select the correct word from three options. Again, if they select the correct answer they are taken to the next word and asked to provide the proper spelling.
If they answer incorrectly, they move on to the last option: having a word read to them, and then choosing the correct word from three options.
This process determines the depth of instruction needed for each lesson. Based on student performance on each question, students are assigned one of four levels of instruction for each lesson: Mastered, Advancing, Basic, or Beginning.
This process is demonstrated in the following chart:
This assessment also sets a student’s benchmark for progress monitoring.
Progress Monitoring Assessments
Progress Monitoring Assessments are given at the end of every chapter to test student mastery of the skills covered in that unit. These assessments provide teachers with data to gauge student progress in connection to the benchmark set in the Diagnostic Assessment.
The Progress Monitoring Assessments differ from the Chapter Tests in the following ways:
- The Chapter Tests are longer and assess the material specific to the lessons.
- The Chapter Tests have to be passed with a certain passing percentage before students can move on, whereas the Progress Monitoring Assessments do not have a required passing percentage.
- The Progress Monitoring Assessments gauge growth compared to the score obtained from the original prescriptive Diagnostic Assessment and show whether students have mastered the skills relevant to a given chapter.
- The Progress Monitoring Assessments don’t adapt instruction (this is done by the Chapter Tests). They contain approximately 3–5 questions (depending on the chapter).
Diagnostic Prescriptive Lesson Tracks
As demonstrated in the chart above, Diagnostic Prescriptive Lesson Tracks are assigned for each lesson based on student performance on the Diagnostic Assessment. The following lesson tracks now deliver the depth of instruction needed for each lesson:
- Skill Review provides a quick instructional overview of the lesson and the associated markings.
- Skill Summary includes a quick overview of the lesson and the associated markings, as well as practice activities.
- Skill Check is a quick assessment of the skills taught in the lesson to provide the student an opportunity to "test out" of the lesson.
- Full Instruction provides detailed skill instruction and a variety of practice activities.
Most Common Words (MCWs) Lessons
MCWs Skill Checks are now administered at the beginning of each MCWs Lesson to determine if students need to take the MCWs Lesson. If a student passes the MCWs Skill Check with 85% or higher, he/she does not need to take the lesson. A score of less than 85% will enable the MCWs Lesson.
NOTE: MCWs Lessons are the same as in previous versions of the software. Students select at least one activity for each of the three main objectives: letter-sound correspondence, reading MCWs in context, and rapid recognition.
Reference Lessons are now set as part of the default lesson material.
READING LIBRARY UPDATES
To coordinate with the new Reading Library Assessment, the following updates have been made to the Reading Library:
- Lexile reader measures are derived from the Reading Library Assessment
- Lexile text measures are assigned to each reading passage
- Passage reading levels have been recalibrated to correlate with the Lexile text measures
- Lexile text measures are displayed on reading passages on the student side of the Reading Library, along with the passage reading levels
- Reading Library passages are locked until students complete Chapter 2 (unless students are on the “library only” track)
- The "Library-only" option allows students who pass the Phonics Screener with 95% or higher to skip all the Reading Horizons software lessons and access the Reading Library. The Reading Library Assessment will unlock appropriately-leveled passages for each student.
- The functionality of the Reading Library is the same as in previous versions of the software.
- After students attain the required number of points (the default is 20 points), the software recalibrates the students’ scores and unlocks passages accordingly.
- A second and third administration of the assessment is activated half-way through the program, as well as at the end of the program.
Level assignments for reading passages:
2.0 to 0.5 levels above a Lexile reader measure are Gold-level passages, worth three points
0.5 to -0.25 for Silver-level passages, worth two points
-0.25 and below for Bronze-levels passages, worth one point
NOTE: To understand the difference between Lexile reader measures and Lexile text measures, click here.
ADMINISTRATION SYSTEM UPDATES
There is now a required setting to enter a student’s grade level (grades 1 to adult) when the student is added to the program.
Grade level is used in the Lexile© report to indicate the target LexileⓇ measure to convey how students are measuring up in regards to College and Career Readiness benchmarks outlined in the Common Core State Standards.
There are no longer Emerging, Basic, and Accelerated lesson tracks. The tracks are now set per lesson based on student assessment data.
The reports in the Administration System were updated to capture all of the data collected through the new assessment system. The following reports were updated:
Class Roll Report
The Class Roll Report provides a quick snapshot of student assessment performance, lesson progress, time spent in software, and other essential data. The data is presented in a chart and can be filtered by instructor, group, grade, or student. By clicking on a student’s name in this report, administrators can view individual student data in more depth. Teachers and administrators can enter their email addresses to receive this report at set intervals.
Student Summary Report
The Student Summary Report shows a summary of a student’s overall progress in the lessons, Chapter Tests, and the vocabulary and library sections of the software. By clicking on these different summaries, administrators can view more detailed data.
The “maximum speed” a student could receive for reading a passage is in red font (passages have a capped words-per-minute target).
The report displays the date of the last time a passage was read.
Monthly reports can be emailed to teachers and admininstrators in the Advanced Settings; data can be filtered in order to email relevant data.
Under the Other Settings tab, administrators can activate a “Track Home Use Time” option. If the box is checked, students will be asked if they are using the program at home or school each time they log in. Home use time will then show up in the report.