Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Dr. Galen Alessi

Second Advisor

Dr. Mary Anderson

Third Advisor

Dr. John Austin

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Ruth Ervin


Recent research in the area of Curriculum-Based Measures (CBM) in writing has shown that traditionally used metrics, such as total words written and total words correct, may not be the best tools for measuring writing performance, for both secondary and elementary aged children (e.g., Gansle, Noell, VanDerHeyden, Naquin, & Slider, 2002; Tindal & Parker, 1989a; Watkinson & Lee, 1992). Evidence suggests that more advanced measures, such as production-independent measures (e.g., percentage of correct word sequences) may be stronger predictors of student skill level in the area of writing. The present study replicated portions of a recent seminal study and investigated the predictive validity of CBM in the area of writing for the Michigan Educational Assessment Program (MEAP) writing and ELA assessments and the Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS) reading assessment. Participants included 700 fourth grade students in a Midwest urban school district who completed a three-minute writing probe, which was scored for 20 independent variables. Dependent variables included assessments administered in the same year and in years following the administration of the writing probes. Correlations were calculated between each of the independent and dependent variables. Interscorer reliability was calculated, with all variables above 0.80. Alternate form reliability (n=199) was above 0.40 for all but two independent variables. Stepwise multiple regressions were run with two sets of independent variables with each of five dependent variables. The independent variables which appeared to be the most promising indices for predicting performance on dependent measures included percentage of correct word sequences, correct punctuation marks, and words in complete sentences. Implication of analyses, limitations, and implications for future practice and research are discussed.


5th Advisor: Dr. Margaret McGlinchey

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access