Performance of Elementary-Grade African American Students on the Gray Oral Reading Tests Purpose: African American students perform disproportionately more poorly on standardized reading assessments than their majority peers. Poor reading performances may be related to test biases inherent in standardized reading instruments. The purpose of this investigation was to examine the appropriateness of the Gray Oral Reading Tests-Third Edition (GORT-3; Wiederholt & ... Research Article
Research Article  |   April 01, 2004
Performance of Elementary-Grade African American Students on the Gray Oral Reading Tests
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Holly K. Craig, PhD
    University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
    University Center for the Development of Language and Literacy, University of Michigan, 1111 E. Catherine St., Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2054
  • Connie A. Thompson
    University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • Julie A. Washington
    University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • Stephanie L. Potter
    University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • Corresponding author: e-mail: hkc@umich.edu
Article Information
Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / School-Based Settings / Research Articles
Research Article   |   April 01, 2004
Performance of Elementary-Grade African American Students on the Gray Oral Reading Tests
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, April 2004, Vol. 35, 141-154. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2004/015)
History: Received April 8, 2003 , Accepted September 4, 2003
 
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, April 2004, Vol. 35, 141-154. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2004/015)
History: Received April 8, 2003; Accepted September 4, 2003
Web of Science® Times Cited: 19

Purpose: African American students perform disproportionately more poorly on standardized reading assessments than their majority peers. Poor reading performances may be related to test biases inherent in standardized reading instruments. The purpose of this investigation was to examine the appropriateness of the Gray Oral Reading Tests-Third Edition (GORT-3; Wiederholt & Bryant, 1992) for assessing the reading abilities of elementary-grade African American students.

Method: Performances of 65 typically developing African American second through fifth graders were examined on the GORT-3.

Results: African American English (AAE) was produced by most students while reading passages from the GORT-3 that were written in Standard American English (SAE). A scoring correction for AAE resulted in a statistical improvement in the performance distributions, but this did not appear to be educationally significant. Measures of total feature production predicted reading accuracy and rate, but not comprehension.

Clinical Implications: Findings are discussed in terms of the appropriateness of this instrument for use by speech-language pathologists as they contribute to curricular and classroom placement decisions in schools with large numbers of typically developing African American students.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
This work was supported by the Center for Improvement of Early Reading Achievement (CIERA) at the University of Michigan—U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Grant R305R70004, and by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Grant R305T990368. The authors gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of the students, families, and school personnel participating in this study.
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