Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Specialist in Education (Ed.S.)



First Advisor

Dr. Lisa Kelly-Vance


An overview of phonological awareness, the alphabetic principle, and fluency with text is provided. Focusing on these 3 big ideas, a literacy program at a local school was evaluated. Kindergarteners were administered the Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS) 3 times a year to indicate their skills related to phonological awareness and the alphabetic principle. Students needing intensive instructional support received 40 to 70 minutes of small group instruction per week. As first-graders, all students read curriculum-based measurement (CBM) reading probes to assess their fluency with text. Of primary concern was the extent to which the different interventions in kindergarten 1) assisted students in attaining the May DIBELS benchmarks and 2) were related to performances on CBM reading probes in first-grade. Results show that early intervention is critical of the kindergarten students receiving interventions, the students receiving interventions first semester experienced the most favorable outcomes in May. Additional data suggest students in need of interventions later in the year are identifiable in September, and therefore, can be provided with immediate interventions. Finally, performances on DIBELS measures in kindergarten were related to performances on CBM reading probes in first-grade, suggesting that DIBELS measures reasonably estimate the development of pre-reading skills and later reading ability.


An Ed.S. Field Project Presented to the Department of Psychology and the Faculty of the Graduate College University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Specialist in Education University of Nebraska at Omaha. Copyright Eva M. Denton May, 2005