How does the Fountas & Pinnell Benchmark Assessment System contribute to my knowledge of children and how they develop as readers? 

The Fountas & Pinnell Literacy Continuum (Pinnell and Fountas, Heinemann, 2008, 2011, 2016) is the foundation for instruction. You can make a direct link from the data gathered with the assessment to The Continuum’s specific behaviors to notice, teach, and support in every instructional context related to literacy. The Professional Development videos are another rich resource. They are designed to help you conduct efficient and effective assessments, learn how to interpret the results, and connect results to instruction. Over time, observations made through the assessment, instruction designed to move the child ahead from level to level, and follow-up assessment will deepen your understanding of literacy development.

Can I use a mix of Benchmark Assessment materials from the 2nd and 3rd edition? 

No. Changes have been made to both the benchmark books and the recording forms. Using BAS 2nd edition books with BAS 3rd edition recording forms will not work because the text of the book and the text on the form will not always match, which will affect your ability to score a reader’s accuracy.

Why is it important for everyone in my school to use the same edition? 

We understand the critical importance of maintaining consistency in assessment protocols within schools and across districts. Due to modifications in the scoring rubrics, it is important for all classrooms and/or teachers to be using the same edition. Co-mingling of 2nd and 3rd edition of BAS within the same school is not recommended for the following reasons:

  • Scoring has been refined. Increased rigor in administration and analysis will result in more consistent scoring and determination of students’ instructional and independent levels.
  • As a result, assessing students with BAS 2e may result in a slightly higher score than peers assessed in BAS 3e. It is important to maintain consistency in assessment protocols within schools/districts and continue to asses with BAS 2e or convert to BAS 3e.
  • While the more rigorous comprehension scoring will be reflected in the ODMS for BAS 3e, all student assessment data from all editions will continue to exist within the ODMS.