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The Jordan Education Data for Decision Making (EdData) II reading program was an intervention implemented during the 2013 to 2014 school year by RTI. The 2014 Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA) represents the endline (last) national assessment.

The goal of the Jordan EdData II Intervention was to pilot a deliberate, structured, and developmentally appropriate daily practice for foundational skills in reading and mathematics.

EGRA Subtasks

An EGRA measures children’s pre-reading and reading skills. The subtasks used in this assessment are described below.

Oral Reading Fluency (ORF)

The oral reading fluency (ORF) subtask measures how quickly and accurately a student can read. It is a core component of EGRA because it brings together lower-level reading skills (such as decoding and familiar word recognition) with how quickly and easily the student can read a given word (called automaticity).

Students were given a short, written passage on a topic that was familiar to them. They were asked to read it out loud “quickly but carefully” and were given 60 seconds from when they begin to read. The EGRA administrator timed the student, making note of any mistakes the student made while reading the words aloud. The score is reported as correct words per minute (cwpm).

Syllable Sounds

The syllable identification subtask tests students’ ability to recognize syllables.

The students were presented with a grid of 50 syllables and asked to pronounce as many of the syllables’ sounds as possible. The EGRA administrator timed the child and recorded the number of correct syllable sounds per minute (cspm).

Letter Sounds

The letter sounds subtask tests students’ ability to recognize letters and speak their corresponding sounds.

Students were presented with a sheet listing letters and asked to say out loud the letter sound for as many as they could, as quickly and carefully as they could, in 1 minute. The EGRA administrator timed the child and recorded the number of correct letter sounds per minute (clspm).


The nonword subtask tests students’ skill in using letter-sound connections to figure out (“decode”) words. While many students learn to memorize a broad range of "sight" words, they need skills to decode less-familiar words.

In this subtask, students were given a list of made-up words that do not exist in Arabic but follow a typical spelling/sound combination of Arabic. This ensures that the student is not recognizing the whole word and must “sound-out” the non-word in order to correctly read it. The student was asked to read out loud as many words as they could, as quickly and carefully as they could. The EGRA administrator timed the student and recorded the number of correct words per minute (cnwpm).

Listening Comprehension

Listening comprehension is a measure of students’ oral language skills, which also contributes to reading.

In this subtask, the EGRA administrator read a passage to the student, who did not see it. The student then responded to questions or statements read by the EGRA administrator. The listening comprehension score is the total correct answers, with a maximum possible score of five.

Reading Comprehension

Comprehension is the main goal of reading—understanding what is read. Comprehension is a complex task that requires some ability in all other reading skills.

This subtask is paired with the ORF subtask. Depending on how much of the ORF passage the student was able to read, the EGRA administrator asked the student up to five questions about the story. The EGRA administrator recorded the number of questions answered correctly.


Dictation is used to assess both oral language and writing skills. Students’ ability to hear sounds and then correctly write the corresponding letters and words demonstrates their growing skill in understanding the alphabet.

The child was asked to write, spell, and use grammar properly through a dictation exercise.

Year 2014
Grade(s) 2, 3
Language Arabic
Assessment Type National Assessment
Assessment Type National Assessment
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Regions Included in the Study

Map of Jordan

Key Findings

  • 1/4

    In both grade 2 and 3, girls had higher reading rates (ORF) than boys.

    Bar chart showing average oral reading fluency for boys and girls in grades 2 and 3. Numerical values presented in bar chart: Grade 2 girls 21, Grade 2 boys 15, Grade 3 girls 33, Grade 3 boys 27.
  • 2/4

    The percentage of students who were unable to read a single word of connected text was relatively small.

    Bar chart showing percent of students who could not read a single word of connected text for boys and girls in grades 2 and 3. Numerical values presented in bar chart: Grade 2 girls 7%, Grade 2 boys 16%, Grade 3 girls 2%, Grade 3 boys 7%.
  • 3/4

    The intervention increased reading fluency rates.

    Increases in average oral reading fluency rates for students attending treatment schools in both grades 2 and 3, but the gain was only statically significant (p<0.05) for grade 2.
  • 4/4

    Forty-two percent of grade 2 students could not answer a single reading comprehension question (i.e., zero score). A smaller percentage of grade 3 students (16%) were unable to answer a single comprehension question.

Program Design

The program developed materials for the instructional approach, which included a teacher’s guide, daily lesson notes, and a student’s workbook. Training and ongoing support of teachers was implemented by the Jordanian Ministry of Education with technical support from the program.

Evaluation Design

These EGR Barometer data for Jordan EdData II are from the 2014 National Early Grade Literacy and Numeracy Survey in Jordan. There are also data from the impact evaluation of the Jordan EdData II program for grade 2 and 3 between 2012 and 2014. The intervention data include a comparison group. More detailed information about the 2014 national assessment may be found in Education Data for Decision Making (EdData II): National Early Grade Literacy and Numeracy Survey-Jordan, Intervention Impact Analysis Report: Final Report (PDF, 4.5 MB).

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