Teachers' use of progress data in planning and evaluating instruction for students with learning disabilities

In basic skills areas such as reading and writing, little teacher attention is devoted at the secondary-school level to improving student performance, perhaps in part because teachers are not clear whether improvements are even possible. In content-areas such as science, attention often is devoted to ensuring that students receive marks that will allow them to successfully move on to the next year or to graduate. Less attention is devoted to determining how much has actually been learned.

In recent years, research has led to the development of a progress monitoring system that can be used to track the learning of students with difficulties in areas such as reading, writing, language development, and content-area learning. Although previous research has supported the validity and reliability of this progress monitoring system, that research has all occurred in the United States. In the current research, we extend the work on progress monitoring to the Netherlands. In addition, we examine teachers’ understanding and use of data to make educational decisions, and the effects of those decisions on the progress of students with disabilities such as dyslexia.


Key publications

  • van den Broek, P.W., & Espin, C.A. (2012). Connecting cognitive theory and assessment: Measuring individual differences in reading comprehension. School Psychology Review, 41, 315-325. 
  • Campbell, H., Espin, C.A., & McMaster, K. (2012). The technical adequacy of CBM writing measures with English Language Learners. Reading and Writing : An Interdisciplinary Journal. DOI: 10.1007/s11145-012-9375-6.  
  • Espin, C.A., McMaster, K., Rose, S., & Wayman, M. (Eds.) (2012). A Measure of success: The influence of Curriculum-based Measurement on education. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. 
  • Espin, C.A., & Campbell, H. (2012).  They’re getting older . . . but are they getting better? The influence of CBM on programming for secondary-school students with learning disabilities. In C. Espin, K. McMaster, S. Rose, & M. Wayman (Eds.) A Measure of success: The influence of Curriculum-based Measurement on education. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.
  • Yeo, S., Kim, D., Branum-Martin, L., Wayman, M. M., & Espin, C. A. (2012). Assessing thereliability of curriculum-based measurement: An application of latent growth modeling. Journal of School Psychology 50(2), 275-292.
  • Espin, C.A., Wallace, T., Lembke, E., Campbell, H., & Long, J.D. (2010). Creating a progress measurement system in reading for middle-school students: Monitoring progress towards meeting high stakes standards. Learning Disabilities Research and Practice, 25, 60-75
  • Tichá, R., Espin, C.A., & Wayman, M.M. (2009). Reading progress monitoring for secondary- school students: Reliability, validity, and sensitivity to growth of reading aloud and maze selection measures. Learning Disabilities Research and Practice, 24, 132-142.  
  • Espin, C.A., Wallace, T., Campbell, H., Lembke, E., Long, J., & Tichá, R. (2008). Curriculum-based Measurement in writing: Predicting the success of high-school students on state standards tests. Exceptional Children, 74, 174-193.
  • Wagner, D., & Espin, C.A. (in press). The relative effects of various intervention approaches on reading fluency and comprehension of fifth- and sixth-grade struggling readers. Reading and Writing.
  • McMaster, K.L., van den Broek, P., Espin, C.A., Pinto, V., Janda, B., Lam, E., Hsu, H., Jung, P. Leinen, A.B., & van Boekel, M.(in press). Developing a reading comprehension intervention: Translating cognitive theory to educational practice. Contemporary Educational Psychology.
  • Espin, C.A. (in press). What are Goed righting! (What is good writing?) Literacy Research and Instruction, 52.
  • McMaster, K.M., Espin, C.A., & van den Broek, P.W. (2014). Making connections: Linking cognitive psychology and intervention research to improve comprehension of struggling readers. Learning Disabilities Research and Practice, 29, 17-24. DOI: 10.111/ldrp.12026
  • Espin, C.A., Busch, T., Lembke, E.S., Hampton, D., Seo, K., & Zukowski, B.A. (2013). Curriculum-based measurement in science learning: Vocabulary-matching as an indicator of performance and progress. Assessment for Effective Intervention, 38, 203-213.
  • Chung, S., & Espin, C.A. (2013). CBM progress monitoring in foreign-language learning for secondary-school students: Technical adequacy of different measures and scoring procedures. Assessment for Effective Intervention, 38, 236-248.
  • Campbell, H., Espin, C.A., & McMaster, K. (2013). The technical adequacy of curriculum-based writing measures with English Language Learners. Reading and Writing: An Interdisciplinary Journal, 26, 431-452. DOI: 10.1007/s11145-012- 9375-6.


The research is funded by Leiden University.

Last Modified: 05-01-2016