Dubai: The educational quality assurance and regulatory authority of the Government of Dubai, the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), has made a formal requirement for a three-times-yearly standardised reading literacy assessment and All kids between the ages of 6 and 15 are expected to take the test.
All institutions in Dubai should partake in both the digital Reading Literacy Assessment for grades 1–12 and the Arabic Benchmark Test for grades 1–9 starting with the academic year 2023–2024.
“As per new KHDA guidelines, all students in the 6-15 age range are required to sit a standardised reading literacy assessment three times per year.” Mr. Peter Bonner, Assistant Principal Primary – Curriculum, Progress and Assessment, GEMS World Academy – Dubai noted.
According to the guidelines, exams must evaluate reading abilities across a variety of domains, with appropriate age-related emphasis. Examples include, but are not limited to:
- Phonemic Awareness
- Word Recognition and Phonics
- Reading Comprehension
- Interpretive and Comparative Analysis of Passages
- Application of Understanding and Critique of Text
- Comprehension of Different Genres, including Poetry
“Schools have the flexibility to select a reading assessment platform and provider that is appropriate for them and their context, as long as these meet the above requirements.” Mr. Bonner added.
The Assistant Principal continued by saying assessments must be “computer-adaptive, and results should show each student’s reading age in comparison to grade/age expectations, and also a Standard Age Score (SAS) to facilitate comparison of data. They should allow a detailed analysis of results, which is then used to support identification of individual student needs and how these drive interventions with all students.”
According to headteachers, as part of the UAE’s commitment to upholding high standards in education, schools are implementing these tests in a few grades and sections based on random selection. This is anticipated to assist schools in establishing a baseline of students’ cognitive potential and accomplishments throughout time in order to facilitate any necessary adjustments to kids’ learning.