Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Specialist in Education (Ed.S.)



First Advisor

Dr. Robert Woody

Second Advisor

Dr. C. Raymond Millimet


Previous studies have supported the fact that reading rate is strongly correlated with reading comprehension for "normal readers". However, few have studied this relationship for students experiencing difficulties in reading. If informal measures of reading ability such as CBM (Curriculum-Based Measurement) are to be used in determining eligibility for special education services or monitoring progress in a curriculum then the relationship reading rate and reading comprehension should be determined. The cross-validation of applied measures such as standardized tests of reading (i.e. Gates-McGinnitie) and informal measures such as CBM with theoretical models of reading development (such as those proposed by LaBerge and Samuels and Chall) may be useful in determining why reading rate and reading comprehension are correlated. This study examined the relationship between Curriculum-based Measurement (CBM) reading rates and Gates-McGinnitie Reading Comprehension scores in both identified (students receiving Chapter I services) and non-identified readers. Students from the age of seven to 12 years old were given the Gates-McGinnitie and CBM reading rate. Comparisons were made across age and identification groups. Results indicated that both CBM and Gates-McGinnitie scores differentiated between identification groups with identified students obtaining lower reading rate and reading comprehension scores. It was also shown that age was a significant factor in reading rate with younger students reading slower than older students. The correlation between reading rate and reading comprehension was stronger for non-identified students than for identified students (with the exception of the nine-year-old group who demonstrated higher reading comprehension scores than reading rate). Implications for cross-validation of the proposed reading models is discussed along with the advisability of using CBM reading rate as a reflection of reading comprehension for all students.


A 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 Debra L. Schwiesow March, 1992