Why Are Student Lexile® Levels Not Accurate?


What causes student Lexile® information to be inaccurate?


There are a number of programs that will measure reading ability and report back in Lexiles. Some of these are native tests, which have been developed by MetaMetrics (like the ones in myON). Other programs (correlations) return a non-Lexile score, but are mapped to a Lexile level.  Depending on when the correlation was done, these could be less accurate than a native test. Also, the type of test and how it was delivered could impact the scores.

Consider a high-stakes assessment where teachers are watching to make sure a student is focused. Now think about the tests in myON, where the focus may vary and the students are not focused or pressured for correct answers.  Or consider a digitally deployed test versus a paper and pencil test. These different environments will create different types of test results regardless of student ability.

myON works to resolve these differences by having a series of benchmarks after the placement exam. One test result will not give an accurate picture of a student’s reading ability. Instead, the placement test plus at least two benchmarks will provide the most accurate view of ability.