What is the DRA?


Assessment is an essential element of education used to inform instruction (Wren, 2004). DRA is one form of reading assessment.The first step in implementing good reading instruction is to determine student baseline performance. Students enter the classroom with diverse backgrounds and skills in literacy. Some students may enter the classroom with special needs that require review of basic skills in reading while other students may have mastered the content a teacher intends to cover. Due to these various student levels, it is necessary to design literacy instruction to meet the individual needs of each student. Individual needs can be determined by initial and ongoing reading assessments. These assessments provide teachers with the information needed to develop appropriate lessons and improve instruction for all students, including students with disabilities (Rhodes & Shanklin, 1993). The information gained from appropriate assessment enables teachers to provide exceptional students with improved access to the general education curriculum. The following information is an overview of the purpose and benefits of early reading assessment, examples of data collection methods, and considerations for selecting a measure for students.


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