The Relationship between Early Literacy Domains and Grade-Level Reading

This report examines the relationship between domain-level reading performance in early elementary grades and grade-level reading two years later and discusses some possible classroom implications. Our research finds that a student’s foundational reading skills in the early elementary grades is a strong indicator of a student’s future overall reading ability. Without early identification of students’ literacy skills, the likelihood of educators putting students on a path for developing long-term literacy skills diminishes. When educators are able to identify any gaps in skills early on with the aid of instructionally useful assessment information, they can intervene and help solidify students’ foundational skills, setting them up for success in reading and, ultimately, a love of learning. Report released January 2023.


About the Authors

Deanne Crone

Deanne Crone, Ph.D., is a policy analyst at Curriculum Associates. She conducts research and writes research content for Curriculum Associates’ national thought leadership audiences. Previously, she directed national grants and conducted education research at the Center on Teaching and Learning at the University of Oregon. Crone holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the State University of New York in Stonybrook, NY.

Molly Duncan

Molly Duncan, Ph.D., is a research scientist at Curriculum Associates. She studies the efficacy of Curriculum Associates' programs and how they’re used in real classrooms. Previously, she worked in program evaluation at a large public school district and in university research labs focused on early reading and writing. She holds a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Georgia State University.

Julia Febiger

Julia Febiger is the director of research content at Curriculum Associates where she leads the research publication strategy. She has more than a decade of education research and publishing experience, including leading the research efforts at several large education companies. Julia earned a B.A. in psychology from Bowdoin College and an M.Ed. in human development and psychology from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.