Computer-based Reading Assessment Pilot Report

In February 2022, ACR–Philippines initiated conversations with USAID and the Philippines Department of Education (DepEd) on developing a prototype technology to enable automated assessment and scoring of learners’ oral reading fluency, listening, and reading comprehension skills. The idea resonated with DepEd leadership for several reasons. During the school years of 2020-2022, the COVID-19 Pandemic made face-to-face assessments challenging, particularly in remote learning settings. Teachers were stretched in time and resources to assess learners one-on-one their reading skills against the most essential learning competencies. Further, other international assessments like PISA use a computerbased format, and this will be an opportunity to understand how well-prepared students are to take computer-based tests. In response, ACR-Philippines sought to produce a ‘proof of concept’ that explores the feasibility of a self-administered computer-based reading assessment (CoBRA) in English and Filipino for students in the Philippines. The technology would incorporate voicerecognition software to enable students to read directly into their device. The software would automate the score of the students’ reading scores through an artificial-intelligence (AI) algorithm designed to calculate words-per-minute (wpm) and reading accuracy rate. The platform will produce reports providing students, parents, and/or teachers immediate feedback on their performance. This is a report of that pilot experience.