Efficacy Research

Impact of Magnetic Reading in Iowa Schools: Evidence from the 2021–2022 School Year


  • Subject: Literacy
  • ESSA Level: 2 - Moderate
  • Grades: 3–5
  • Study Year: 2021–2022
  • Program: Magnetic Reading

Published November 2023

Magnetic Reading supports higher grade-level placement. When compared to students from similar schools and with similar baseline scores on the i-Ready Diagnostic, the study found that use of Magnetic Reading was associated with an 11-point advantage in Diagnostic for Reading scores by the end of the school year over those who did not use Magnetic Reading. Daily use of Magnetic Reading as the primary reading comprehension program helps more students move toward or achieve grade-level proficiency. Magnetic Reading helps in meeting grade-level growth targets. Significantly more Magnetic Reading learners met their Typical Growth and Stretch Growth® targets than similar comparison students. Seventy-five percent of Magnetic Reading students met their Typical Growth goals compared to only 61 percent of comparison students. Forty-one percent of Magnetic Reading students met their Stretch Growth goals compared to only 29 percent of comparison students. High-quality instructional materials such as Magnetic Reading support educators in accelerating students’ knowledge and skills development to meet grade-level goals. This report was released November 2023 and has been reviewed by Evidence for ESSA.

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Meet the Authors

Molly K. Duncan, Ph.D.


Curriculum Associates

Molly Duncan, Ph.D., is a research scientist at Curriculum Associates. She studies the efficacy of Curriculum Associates products 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.

Madison A. Holzman, Ph.D.


Curriculum Associates

Madison Holzman, Ph.D., is an associate director at Curriculum Associates. She guides the research agenda for teacher-led reading research and conducts research evaluating the impact of Curriculum Associates’ programs on key student outcomes. Prior to joining Curriculum Associates, she provided assessment consultation in the higher education space and taught graduate-level research, statistics, and assessment courses. She earned a B.A. in Philosophy from Slippery Rock University, an M.Ed. in College Student Personnel Administration, and a Ph.D. in Assessment and Measurement from James Madison University.