Efficacy Research

Growth for Phonics for Reading Users


  • Subject: Literacy
  • Demographic: Asian, Black, English Learners, Hawaiian or Pacific Islander, Latino, Striving Learners, Students with Disabilities, Two or More Races, White
  • State: California
  • Grades: 3–5
  • Topic: Science of Reading, Access and Equity, Reading Comprehension, Intervention, Special Education, Multilingual Learners, Early Literacy
  • Study Year: 2022–2023
  • Program: Phonics for Reading, i-Ready Diagnostic

Published February 2024

In this study, we evaluated the growth of Grades 3–5 Phonics for Reading users in a large school district. We found that regardless of grade, Multilingual Learner status, or disability status, all student groups grew in skills taught in Phonics for Reading, advancing on the program’s placement test from fall to spring. All student groups also experienced statistically significant positive growth from fall to spring on the i-Ready Diagnostic for Reading in the overall, Phonics, and Vocabulary scores. A substantial percentage of students mastered the content of Phonics for Reading, ultimately testing out of the program and moving one step closer to accessing on-grade level material and becoming fluent readers.

Meet the Authors

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.

Anqi Liu, M.S.


Curriculum Associates

Anqi Liu, M.S., is a statistical analyst at Curriculum Associates. She provides data support to different research of products mainly focused on reading. She received a master's degree in survey and data science from the University of Michigan.