First Advisor

Amy Driscoll

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership


Educational Leadership and Policy




Miscue analysis, Reading -- Ability testing



Physical Description

1 online resource (5, xiv, 206 pages)


The purpose of this descriptive study was to determine the accuracy and practicality of May's Poor Reader (PR) scoring system for the informal reading inventory (IRI), an individual assessment device designed to determine a student's instructional reading level. The PR is a qualitative scoring system developed by Frank May that examines only two miscues (defaults and meaning-denigrating substitutions) in arriving at an estimate of instructional reading level. The predictor variable, PR, was compared for accuracy and practicality with five other predictor variables consisting of four traditional quantitative scoring systems and an additional qualitative system of May's; PR was also compared with four criterion variables: (a) a scoring system created by Frank May on the basis of research concerning miscues and informal reading inventories, a system that requires the use of a context scale and a graphophonic scale, (b) the judgments of tape recordings made by an experienced and knowledgeable reading coordinator, (c) the judgments of ten reading teachers of the students under their tutelage, (d) and a silent reading score on Form B of the same IRI. The comparisons were made through the use of Chi square tests of significance in which each of the six predictor variables was compared with each of the four criterion variables as to accuracy of agreement with the criterion variables.

Examination of the results showed that there were no significant differences between the instructional estimates made by the PR scoring system and two of the four criterion variables, the research based scoring system and the experienced reading coordinator. This was also true for May's third qualitative scoring system called the CGQ. All other differences in the estimates of instructional level were highly significant--with the four traditional predictor variables and with two of the four criterion variables (p < .01).

The main implications drawn from this study were: (1) Classroom teachers and reading teachers may wish to make use of May's PR scoring system for the IRI as a quick and qualitative way of estimating students' instructional reading level. (2) Since the PR scoring system met the criteria established for a qualitative IRI scoring system, researchers may wish to use this system in studies of informal reading inventories.


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