An examination of the reliability and validity of dynamic indicators of basic skills in early literacy administered in kindergarten
Crowder, William Clay
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The purpose of this study was to evaluate the reliability and validity of a series of dynamic indicators of basic skills in early literacy designed to identify students in need of early literacy intervention. A group of 177 kindergarten students were administered DIBS in early literacy at three points during the academic year: Four measures from the Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS) were administered along with AimsWeb Letter-Sound Fluency (LSF). The DIBELS measures included Initial Sound Fluency (ISF), Letter-Naming Fluency (LNF), Phonemic Segmentation Fluency (PSF), and Nonsense Word Fluency (NWF). Predictive criterion-related and concurrent criterion related validity were evaluated using correlation and multiple regression. Evidence supportive of validity was found for all measures, however measures involving skills with print were more strongly predictive of emergent reading than measures involving phonological awareness. In the fall of kindergarten, LNF was the strongest predictor of emergent reading at the end of kindergarten. At the middle and end of kindergarten, NWF was the strongest predictor of emergent reading. The results of this study are supportive of using fluency-based measurements of component literacy skills, specifically skills with letter-naming (LNF) and letter-sound identification (NWF and LSF), to identify students in need of early academic intervention in emergent literacy skills.