WWC review of this study

Fourth graders’ growth in reading fluency: A pretest-posttest randomized control study comparing Reading Mastery and Scott Foresman Basal Reading Program.

Stockard, J. (2010). Eugene, OR: National Institute for Direct Instruction.

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
    , grade

Reviewed: November 2013

Evidence Tier rating based solely on this study. This intervention may achieve a higher tier when combined with the full body of evidence.

Study sample characteristics were not reported.

Reviewed: August 2010

No statistically significant positive
Meets WWC standards without reservations
Reading Fluency outcomes—Substantively important positive effect found for the domain
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
Significant? Improvement

AIMSweb CBM Words Read Correct

Reading Mastery vs. Business as usual

Winter 2010

Grade 4;
57 students





Evidence Tier rating based solely on this study. This intervention may achieve a higher tier when combined with the full body of evidence.

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.

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The study was conducted in a midwestern elementary school.

Study sample

In this randomized study, 58 general education elementary students were assigned to a treatment or control condition, using alternative assignment with a random start technique. The author used a class list (arranged in alphabetical order) to conduct the assignment. First, the author used a random numbers table to determine where to begin in the class list. Second, the author used a coin flip to determine whether the assignment would start with the treatment or control group. Finally, after this initial assignment was determined, the author assigned each additional student in an alternating fashion to the treatment or control group. For example, in the first step, the author might have started the assignment with John Smith (based on a random numbers table). In the second step, the author might have assigned John Smith to the treatment group (based on the coin flip). Then, the author would have proceeded through the rest of the ordered class list (alternating between the control and treatment groups). Four classrooms participated in the study. Two pairs of teachers were formed and then—within these pairs—teachers were randomly assigned to the treatment or control group via a coin flip. Students were predominantly non-Hispanic whites from middle-income families. The analysis sample consisted of 29 fourth-grade students who received Reading Mastery and 28 fourth-grade students in the comparison group.

Intervention Group

Beginning in the fall of 2009, students in the treatment condition received instruction for 90 minutes a day in the SRA/McGraw-Hill program, Reading Mastery Signature Edition. Students were exposed to Reading Mastery over five months.

Comparison Group

The control group received instruction for 90 minutes a day in the Scott Foresman Basal Reading Program, which the school had been using in prior years.

Outcome descriptions

Data on the AIMS Web Curriculum-Based Measurement Words Read Correct were gathered in the spring of 2009 before instruction began (for use as a baseline measure), in the fall of 2009 shortly after the start of the school year, and again in winter of 2010, approximately halfway through the school year. For a more detailed description of this outcome measure, see Appendix A2.1.

Support for implementation

No information about training was provided.


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