READ 180 and System 44: Elmira City School District Research Results, 2017–2019
At a glance
  • Promising Evidence
  • Programs: Read 180®, System 44®
  • Subjects: Intervention, Literacy
  • Report Type: Efficacy Study, Study Conducted by Third Party
  • Grade Level: Elementary, Middle, High
  • Region: Northeast
  • Race/Ethnicity: Other, White
  • District Urbanicity: Suburban
  • District Size: Medium
  • Outcome Measure: HMH Reading Inventory, READ 180 software usage, System 44 software usage
  • Participants: 2,225
  • Implementation: 30-40 minutes five times per week
  • Study Conducted by: Educational Research Institute of America (ERIA)
The Study

This study sought to determine the effectiveness of the READ 180 Universal and System 44 Next Generation programs during the 2017–2019 school years in the Elmira City School District, New York. The study employed two distinct approaches. The first approach was a cohort longitudinal analysis in which the same students (matched cases) were tracked as they moved to the next grade each year. In this approach, only those students who had software usage in the programs and completed fall and spring HMH Reading Inventory assessments in each of the two years were included.

The second approach was a cross-sectional longitudinal analysis. In this approach, the results for each of the grades were tracked across the two years. This analysis did not track individually matched students, but rather the results for all students at each grade over two years who had software usage in the programs and completed a fall and spring Reading Inventory® assessment.

In addition to these analyses, an analysis was conducted to see which students made greater Lexile® gains by comparing the number of completed segments in READ 180 Universal and sessions in System 44 Next Generation.

District Characteristics

Elmira City School District is a district in New York State with a student population of 5,940 students; 82% of the student population is White, and 18% are from minority groups. Fifty-nine percent of the students are eligible for free/reduced-price lunch. The district provides preschool through high school education, with one high school, two middle schools, and eight elementary schools.

Elmira City School District has been using READ 180 Universal and System 44 Next Generation since 2015. We focused on the 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 school years for this study.

Instructional Program Overview

READ 180 Universal is designed to be used throughout the academic year as a comprehensive blended learning solution with students at risk for academic difficulties. System 44 Next Generation is a comprehensive blended learning solution designed to support the most challenged readers on the path to meeting rigorous standards. Recommended software usage for READ 180 Universal and System 44 Next Generation is a minimum of 60–70 sessions per academic year. READ 180 Universal students complete on average six segments over the course of the school year.

Implementation

Teachers reported using the programs five days a week for 30–40 minutes. A rotation model was implemented with teachers conducting whole-group instruction, followed by small groups, the software station, and the independent reading station.

Research Questions

The following questions guided the design of the study and the data analyses:

  1. Does the implementation of the READ 180 Universal and/or System 44 Next Generation program with the same students increase elementary through high school students' literacy skills over the 2017–2019 school years?
  2. Does a cross-sectional longitudinal analysis show the implementation of the READ 180 Universal and/or System 44 Next Generation program increase elementary through high school students' literacy skills over the 2017–2019 school years?
  3. Do students who complete more segments compared to students who complete fewer segments in READ 180 Universal have greater Lexile gains?
  4. Do students who complete more sessions compared to students who complete fewer sessions in System 44 Next Generation have greater Lexile gains?
Measures
HMH Reading Inventory

The outcome measure for this study was the HMH Reading Inventory assessment, which measures growth using Lexile (L) scores. The assessment measures reading comprehension skills, and these measures captured longitudinal progress over the course of the academic year. It is a useful tool for monitoring growth in reading comprehension over the school year to help teachers track estimated average annual growth. The Reading Inventory is designed to be administered three to five times per school year, but for this study, we examined the fall and spring administrations.

Elmira City School District students receiving READ 180 Universal and/or System 44 Next Generation instruction completed the Reading Inventory in the fall before beginning instruction and, in the spring, following instruction for each academic year.

Results
READ 180 Longitudinal Matched Analysis

Only students who had software usage for both years (2017–2018 and 2018–2019) were included in the analysis. Grades 8 and 9 were not included in any analysis because of low student counts, even though they had software usage in the program. Grades 5 to 6 and 6 to 7 were included in the study.

Usage

Students for 2017–2018 in Grade 5 completed an average of 6 segments and 58 total sessions. Grade 6 students completed an average of 5 segments and an average of 50 total sessions. Students for 2018–2019 in Grade 6 completed an average of 5 segments and 63 total sessions. Grade 7 students completed an average of 4 segments and 45 total sessions.

Performance

Figure 1 shows the gains made from fall 2017 to spring 2019. Grades 5 to 6 had an average Lexile gain of 119L, and Grades 6 to 7 had an average Lexile gain of 102L.

Wf1300489 Figure1
FIGURE 1. READ 180 Universal Reading Inventory Lexile Gains, Matched Students 2017–2019

Note. *=statistically significant change. The increase in average Lexile gains was statistically significant for Grades 5 to 6 (t=6.091, p≤.001) and Grades 6 to 7 (t=2.394, p≤.02).

Wf1300489 Figure1

Figures 2 and 3 show the average annual growth for each academic school year. During the 2017–2018 academic year, 52% of Grade 5 students and 28% of Grade 6 students showed average annual growth. For 2018–2019, 42% of Grade 6 and 48% of Grade 7 demonstrated average annual growth.

Wf1300489 Figure2
FIGURE 2. READ 180 Universal Matched Students 2017–2018
Wf1300489 Figure2
Wf1300489 Figure3
FIGURE 3. READ 180 Universal Matched Students 2018–2019
Wf1300489 Figure3
System 44 Longitudinal Matched Analysis

Only students who showed software usage, plus fall and spring Reading Inventory Lexile scores for both years, 2017–2018 and 2018–2019, were included in the analysis. Grades 4 to 5 were not included in the analysis because of low student counts, even though they did show software usage in the program. System 44 Next Generation has a Phonics Inventory assessment to be administered in the fall and spring. No analysis was completed for the Phonics Inventory® assessment, since only the fall assessment was administered.

Usage

During 2017­–2018, Grade 3 completed an average of 53 sessions with an average of 19 minutes per session. Grade 5 completed an average of 60 sessions with an average of 19 minutes per session. Grade 6 completed an average of 77 sessions with an average of 17 minutes per session. For 2018–2019, Grade 4 completed an average of 55 sessions with an average of 14 minutes per session. Grade 6 completed an average of 43 sessions with 10 minutes per session. Grade 7 completed an average of 53 sessions with 13 minutes per session.

Performance

Figure 4 shows the Lexile gains made from fall 2017 to spring 2019. Grades 3 to 4 had average gains of 270L, Grades 5 to 6 had average gains of 201L, and for Grades 6 to 7, the average gain was 332L.

Wf1300489 Figure4 V2
FIGURE 4. System 44 Next Generation Reading Inventory Lexile Gains, Matched Students 2017–2019

Note. *= statistically significant change. The increase in average Lexile gains was statistically significant for Grades 3 to 4 (t=9.489, p≤.001), Grades 5 to 6 (t=4.397, p≤.001), and Grades 6 to 7 (t=6.082, p≤.001)

Wf1300489 Figure4 V2

Figures 5 and 6 show average annual growth for both years. During the 2017–2018 academic year, 20% of Grade 5 students and 6% of Grade 6 students met annual average growth. Grade 3 students did not meet average annual growth. For 2018–2019, 51% of Grade 4, 33% of Grade 6, and 63% of Grade 7 students met average annual growth.

Wf1300489 Figure5
FIGURE 5. System 44 Next Generation Matched Students 2017–2018
Wf1300489 Figure5
Wf1300489 Figure6
FIGURE 6. System 44 Next Generation Matched Students 2018–2019
Wf1300489 Figure6
READ 180 Longitudinal Cross-Sectional Analysis

The cross-sectional analysis followed the same grades’ results across the same years. This means that there were different students in grades tracked over the 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 school years, and the students’ scores were not matched. Only grades that had usage in both years were included. The cross-sectional approach provides a different way of studying trends than does tracking the same students across grades each year of the study. Not surprisingly, the results were somewhat different using each of these approaches. Taken together, however, the two approaches provide a more complete view of trends in achievement.

For the cross-sectional longitudinal analysis, only Grades 5–6, 8, and 10 were included, since they had usage for both the 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 school years. Grades 3 and 4 started using the program in 2018–2019 and are not included in this cross-sectional analysis.

Usage

During 2017–2018, Grade 5 completed an average of six segments and 57 sessions with an average of 15 minutes per session. Grade 6 completed an average of four segments and 50 sessions with an average of 13 minutes per session. Grade 8 completed an average of two segments and 39 sessions with an average of 11 minutes per session. Grade 10 completed an average of four segments and 59 sessions with an average of 14 minutes per session.

For 2018–2019, all grades increased their software usage. Grade 5 completed an average of eight segments and 70 sessions with an average of 17 minutes per session. Grade 6 completed an average of five segments and 62 sessions with an average of 14 minutes per session. Grade 8 completed an average of three segments and 63 sessions with an average of 11 minutes per session. Grade 10 completed an average of six segments and 63 sessions with an average of 14 minutes per session.

Performance

Figure 7 shows the Lexile gains for fall and spring 2017–2018 and 2018–2019.

Wf1300489 Figure7
FIGURE 7. READ 180 Universal Reading Inventory Lexile Gains 2017–2018 and 2018–2019, Grades 5, 6, 8, and 10

Note. *= statistically significant change. The increase in average Lexile gains was statistically significant for Grade 5 (t=14.246, p≤.001), Grade 6 (t=14.870, p≤.001), and Grade 8 (t=5.081, p≤.001) for 2017–2018, and Grade 5 (t=8.219, p≤.001) for 2018-2019.

Wf1300489 Figure7

Figure 8 shows average annual growth for the 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 school years.

Wf1300489 Figure8
FIGURE 8. READ 180 Universal Average Annual Growth 2017–2018 and 2018–2019, Grades 5, 6, 8, and 10
Wf1300489 Figure8
System 44 Longitudinal Cross-Sectional Analysis

For the cross-sectional longitudinal analysis, only Grades 3–7 were included, since they had usage for both the 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 school years. Grades 8–10 started using the program in 2018–2019 and are not included in this cross-sectional analysis. Grades 11 and 12 used the program both years, but the student count was too small to conduct an analysis.

Usage

During 2017–2018, Grade 3 had an average of 55 sessions with 19 minutes per session. Grade 4 had 17 sessions and 15 minutes per session. Grade 5 had 61 sessions and 18 minutes per session. Grade 6 had 65 sessions and 18 minutes per session. Grade 7 had 42 sessions and 14 minutes per session.

For 2018–2019, Grade 3 had an average of 45 sessions and 15 minutes per session. Grade 4 had 51 sessions and 14 minutes per session. Grade 5 had 66 sessions and 18 minutes per session. Grade 6 had 51 sessions and 11 minutes per session. Grade 7 had 47 sessions and 11 minutes per session.

Performance

Figure 9 shows the gains made for students during the 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 school years. For 2017–2018, Grades 5 and 6 showed statistically significant gains, and in 2018–2019, the gains for all grades were statistically significant.

Wf1300489 Figure9 V3
FIGURE 9. System 44 Next Generation Reading Inventory Lexile Gains 2017–2018 and 2018–2019, Grades 3–7

Note. *= statistically significant change. The increase in average Lexile gains was statistically significant for Grade 5 (t=6.611, p≤.001), Grade 6 (t=3.672, p≤.001) for 2017–2018, and Grade 3 (t=15.457, p≤.001), Grade 4 (t=14.943, p≤.001), Grade 5 (t=9.324, p≤.001), Grade 6 (t=5.314, p≤.001), and Grade 7 (t=5.427, p≤.001) for 2018–2019.

Wf1300489 Figure9 V3

Figure 10 shows the average annual growth of students for the 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 school years.

Wf1300489 Figure10
FIGURE 10. System 44 Next Generation Average Annual Growth 2017–2018 and 2018–2019, Grades 3–7
Wf1300489 Figure10
READ 180 and System 44 Cross-Sectional Analysis

For the cross-sectional longitudinal analysis for students who used both READ 180 Universal and System 44 Next Generation, only Grades 5 and 6 were included, since they had usage for both the 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 school years. Grades 3–4, 7–8, and 10–11 started using both programs in 2018–2019 and are, therefore, not included in this cross-sectional longitudinal analysis.

Usage

During 2017–2018, Grade 5 students had System 44 software usage of an average of 44 sessions and 17 minutes per session and for READ 180 software usage an average of two segments and 24 sessions. Grade 6 had System 44 software usage of 28 sessions and 18 minutes per session and for READ 180 four segments and 35 sessions.

For 2018–2019, Grade 5 had 37 sessions and 16 minutes per session within System 44 and for READ 180 completed an average of four segments and 41 sessions. Grade 6 completed an average of 47 sessions at 16 minutes per session within System 44 and for READ 180 four segments and 44 sessions.

Performance

Figure 11 shows Lexile gains for students who used both programs. All grades had statistically significant gains across both years.

Wf1300489 Figure11
FIGURE 11. READ 180 Universal and System 44 Next Generation Reading Inventory Lexile Gains 2017–2018 and 2018–2019, Grades 5 and 6

Note. *= statistically significant change. The increase in average Lexile gains was statistically significant for Grade 5 (t=7.203, p≤.001) and Grade 6 (t=5.382, p≤.001) for 2017–2018, and Grade 5 (t=3.490, p≤.001) and Grade 6 (t=3.331, p≤.001) for 2018–2019.

Wf1300489 Figure11

Figure 12 shows the average annual growth for students during the 2017­–2018 and 2018–2019 school years.

Wf1300489 Figure12
FIGURE 12. READ 180 Universal and System 44 Next Generation Average Annual Growth 2017–2018 and 2018–2019, Grades 5 and 6
Wf1300489 Figure12
Paired t-Test Analysis for Segments and Sessions Completed

Paired t-Test analyses were conducted to see which students made greater Lexile gains by comparing the number of completed segments in READ 180 Universal and sessions in System 44 Next Generation. Only grade levels that had student counts of 100 or more were included in this analysis to eliminate low student counts resulting from separation into groups.

READ 180 Universal Segments Completed Analysis

For READ 180 Universal, Grades 5 and 6 were included in both years, since they were the only grades meeting the 100-student count requirement. Grade 8, during the 2017–2018 school year, had the required 100 student count, but not enough in segment range to divide groups; therefore, they were not included in the analysis.

Figure 13 shows Lexile gains from fall to spring for 2017–2018. All grades showed statistically significant gains, with students who completed more than five segments with greater gains.

Wf1300489 Figure13
FIGURE 13. READ 180 Universal Reading Inventory Lexile Gains Grades 5 and 6, Segments Completed 2017–2018

Note. *= statistically significant change. The increase in average Lexile gains was statistically significant for Grade 5 (t=8.706, p≤.001) and Grade 6 (t=11.145, p≤.001) for five segments or fewer completed, and Grade 5 (t=11.930, p≤.001) and Grade 6 (t=10.791, p≤.001) for more than five segments completed.

Wf1300489 Figure13

Figure 14 shows Lexile gains from fall to spring 2018–2019. Greater gains were made for students who completed more than five segments. Grade 5 students were statistically significant for both groups.

Wf1300489 Figure14
FIGURE 14. READ 180 Universal Reading Inventory Lexile Gains Grades 5 and 6, Segments Completed 2018–2019

Note. *= statistically significant change. The increase in average Lexile gains was statistically significant for Grade 5 (t=5.056, p≤.001) for five segments or fewer completed, and Grade 5 (t=6.475, p≤.001) for more than five segments completed.

Wf1300489 Figure14

System 44 Next Generation Sessions Completed Analysis

For System 44 Next Generation, only Grade 3 was included for both years, and only Grade 4 was included for 2018–2019. These were the only grades meeting the 100-student count requirement.

Figure 15 shows the Lexile gains for both years for Grade 3. Greater gains were made in 2018–2019, and gains were statistically significant.

Wf1300489 Figure15
FIGURE 15. Grade 3 System 44 Next Generation Reading Inventory Lexile Gains, Sessions Completed 2017–2018 and 2018–2019

Note. *= statistically significant change. The increase in average Lexile gains was statistically significant for Grade 3 (t=10.855, p≤.001) for 49 or fewer sessions and more than 49 sessions (t=11.506, p≤.001) in 2018–2019.

Wf1300489 Figure15

Figure 16 shows the Lexile gains for Grade 4 students in the 2018–2019 school year. Greater gains were made for the students that completed more than 51 sessions. Both were statistically significant.

Wf1300489 Figure16
FIGURE 16. Grade 4 System 44 Next Generation Reading Inventory Lexile Gain, Sessions Completed 2018–2019

Note. *= statistically significant change. The increase in average Lexile gains was statistically significant for Grade 4 (t=10.192, p≤.001) for 51 or fewer sessions and more than 51 sessions (t=10.834, p≤.001) in 2018–2019.

Wf1300489 Figure16
Conclusions
Research Question 1

The results presented for the cohort analyses over two years show that the READ 180 Universal and System 44 Next Generation programs increase students’ literacy skills. Lexile gains were made from year 1 to year 2. Paired t-Tests using fall 2017 to spring 2019 HMH Reading Inventory mean scores showed statistically significant Lexile gains. READ 180 Universal students in Grades 5 to 6 showed an average gain of 119L, and Grades 6 to 7 had an average gain of 102L. System 44 Next Generation students in Grades 3 to 4 showed an average gain of 270L, Grades 5 to 6 showed an average gain of 201L, and Grades 6 to 7 showed 332L in Lexile gains. All were statistically significant.

Research Question 2

The conclusion for the second research question is similar to that for the first research question—READ 180 Universal and System 44 Next Generation increase student’s literacy skills when conducting a cross-sectional longitudinal analysis. READ 180 Universal students showed Lexile gains across all grade levels with statistically significant gains in Grade 5 of 95L during 2017–2018 and 117L in 2018–2019. System 44 Next Generation students showed greater Lexile gains in the second year. Grades 3–7 had statistically significant gains during the 2018–2019 school year: Grade 3 with 202L, Grade 4 with 422L, Grade 5 with 145L, Grade 6 with 60L, and Grade 7 with 272L average Lexile gains.

Research Question 3

The results of the analyses conducted comparing Lexile gains to the number of segments completed in READ 180 Universal showed that the more segments students completed, the greater were the Lexile gains. For Grades 5 and 6, when students completed more than five segments over the course of the school year, they had greater Lexile gains compared to students who completed fewer than five segments.

Research Question 4

The results of analyses conducted comparing Lexile gains to the number of segments completed in System 44 Next Generation showed that the more sessions students completed, the greater were the Lexile gains. For Grade 3, when students completed more than 49 sessions over the course of the school year, they had greater Lexile gains compared to students who completed fewer than 49 sessions. Grade 4 students who completed more than 51 sessions compared to students who completed fewer than 51 sessions had better Lexile gains.

In summary, students enrolled in the READ 180 Universal and System 44 Next Generation programs in Elmira City School District during the 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 school years made significant gains in their Lexile scores across both years of implementation. The students who completed more sessions and completed more segments in the software demonstrated significant Lexile gains over those students who used the software for fewer sessions and completed less topics.