Published on: 13 Sep 2010

GL Assessment launches The New Group Reading Test

GL Assessment has today published the New Group Reading Test (NGRT) – the third edition of the widely used Group Reading Test. Developed by the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER), the NGRT is a comprehensive screening / monitoring test for groups of children. The new edition includes a new single test for pupils aged 6 and has been extended to age 16, making it ideal for tracking progress across the primary and secondary stages.

Based on feedback from teachers, the NGRT assesses reading and comprehension in a single test, providing teachers with diagnostic information that shows how pupils’ decoding skills compare to their passage comprehension skills. This helps teachers identify, for instance, competent readers with weak comprehension skills who would benefit from a follow-up individual assessment and learning support.

The NGRT lasts approximately 45 – 50 minutes and includes short, phonics-based questions for the youngest children and sentence completion and passage comprehension at all levels. It is easy to administer and score, and it delivers standard scores, age equivalent scores and National Curriculum levels for reading. The new edition demonstrates greater differentiation at the top end and also includes basic level material for weaker readers.

Sue Thompson, Publisher at GL Assessment, said: “We have worked closely with the NFER to ensure that the new test fits the bill. We have asked teachers for their feedback and we believe that we have kept the administration and scoring straightforward, but have added the extra diagnostic element. This will help teachers to get more from the test to support children’s reading.”

The majority of reading texts have been devised for the NGRT, although a number have been adapted from rich, classic texts that lend themselves particularly well to comprehension assessment. These include texts from Dickens, Emily Bronte and Mary Shelley, as well as Oscar Wilde’s Selfish Giant for younger pupils.

Bethan Burge, Senior Research Officer at the National Foundation for Education Research, said: “During the development of the New Group Reading Test, we found that pupils enjoyed the tests and found the passages interesting. Teachers felt that the comprehension passages were accessible and up to date and welcome the fact the NGRT gives a wider view of reading ability, for example, giving a clear indication of a student’s ability to read with understanding.”

The NGRT can be used as evidence in applications for additional time in KS2 National Curriculum Tests. It can also be used as a group screening test at GCSE level to identify those students who need to be assessed individually by a specialist prior to making an application for access arrangements.

The NGRT can help teachers identify pupils whose scores suggest the need for follow-up individual testing. GL Assessment’s York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension (YARC) lends itself well to this purpose. The YARC assessments expand on results from the NGRT and provide teachers with extra diagnostic information, covering a wide range of reading skills.

For more information, customers should contact GL Assessment’s Customer Services team on 0845 602 1937 or visit


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