SBIR Phase I: RALP + SAM: Reading For All Learners + Student Assessment and Monitoring

Period of Performance: 01/01/2012 - 12/31/2012


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Academic Success For All Learners
131 North 1175 West #5
Logan, UT 84321
Principal Investigator, Firm POC


This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project aims to address the educational needs of children at risk of reading failure in early grades, and specifically, to provide technology-based reading instruction, adaptive instructional strategies, ongoing curriculum-embedded assessments with graphical reporting, and instructional methods to support learning to read in early grades. Substantial evidence supports the effectiveness of the print-based Reading for All Learners Program (RALP) and its precursor, the SWRL little books, as summarized in the proposal. The tablet version of RALP will incorporate a student assessment and monitoring (SAM) system to ensure adequate reading progress, including measures of reading fluency and comprehension, and adaptive instructional recommendations based on student needs. Additionally, the project will incorporate voice recognition software to add a test of reading comprehension and to provide recorded student practice with feedback. Designed for teacher-led instruction with large or small groups, or one-on-one instruction with struggling students at school or home, RALP + SAM will provide instructional prompts for effective teaching and implementation. This Phase I project will investigate feasibility, identify needs and recommendations for a tablet-based adaptation from users of the print-based product, and test tablet-based adaptations and assessment, including voice recognition for reading comprehension assessment. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project relates to students at high risk for reading failure and the need for effective early intervention to reach grade level reading, math, and science goals. On the 2009 National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP), 67% of students performed at or below the basic level, and only 33% were proficient or advanced (NCES, 2010). According to NAEP researchers, students performing at or below a basic level only have ?partial mastery of prerequisite knowledge and skills that are fundamental for proficient work at each grade.? Recently, Hernandez (2011) found that children who do not read proficiently by third grade are four times more likely to drop out before graduating from high school, and six times more likely to drop out of they have not mastered even basic reading skills. This project develops a cross-platform tablet-based reading curriculum program to assist teachers and caregivers with delivery of effective instruction. This project will build upon the RALP K-3 curriculum. By integrating effective reading intervention with tablet-based computers, the reading program will have streamlined data collection, enhanced data-driven decision making, tablet-based assessment and reporting, and improved learner outcomes through adaptive instruction based on individual learner needs.