Standard Assessments of Reading – YARC and WJ-III (Australian Edition)

  • 09:30 AM
  • 2/172 Majors Bay Road, CONCORD NSW 2137
  • 02 9739 6277

Walter Howe

who will be talking on Standardised Assessments of Reading: York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension (YARC) – Australian Edition and the Woodcock-Johnson III Australian Edition (WJIII) – Tests of Achievement (Australian Edition)





When: Friday, 7 March, 2014

Where: SPELD NSW Offices, 2 / 172 Majors Bay Rd, Concord.

Audience: Teachers, Teacher’s Aides & Tutors

Cost: $65 Members, $95 non members.

To book: Call SPELD on 9739 6277 or email **Bookings Essential as we can only cater for small groups of up to 14




Educational Psychologist and Director, Psychological Assessments Australia Pty Ltd (PAA).

Walter Howe is a Sydney based Educational and Developmental Psychologist. He worked as a secondary teacher and school counsellor in NSW before becoming involved in test publishing in 1988. He has managed Australian standardisation studies for the WISC III, the Woodcock Johnson III Tests of Cognitive Abilities and Tests of Achievement (WJ III) and the York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension (YARC). He is the Director of Psychological Assessments Australia (PAA), which distributes a wide variety of assessment products, including the WJ III and the YARC.

He is a member of the Australian Psychological Society, the American Psychological Association and the National Association of School Psychologists (USA). He is a regular presenter at professional conferences on topics ranging from dyslexia to emotional intelligence.

Disclaimer Walter Howe and his company, PAA, derive income from the sale of various standardised assessment instruments, including those discussed in this proposed workshop.


Standardised Assessments of Reading: York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension (YARC) – Australian Edition and the Woodcock-Johnson III Australian Edition (WJIII) – Tests of Achievement (Australian Edition)


Overview The widely used Neale Analysis of Reading Ability (NARA) is now 15 years old and no new edition is planned. The UK published York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension (YARC) was designed as its replacement. The Australian edition, standardised in 2011, was published in February, 2012. It retains many of the excellent features of the NARA, but with many improvements.

The Woodcock Johnson III Tests of Achievement (Australian Adaptation) is becoming an increasingly popular way for specialist teachers and psychologists to assess a wide cross section of individual student achievement in reading, writing, spelling, oral language and mathematics. It also provides the most comprehensive range of diagnostic tests available in any single test battery currently sold in Australia.

This 3-hour workshop will introduce these two different individual assessments and explain how they can be used to provide useful data for students, parents, schools and teachers to assist students make better progress in learning.


The contents of the workshop are as follows:


What is reading? 

  • The US National Reading Panel’s Five Pillars.
  • The Simple View of Reading

Why do some students struggle to learn to read?

  • Dyslexia
  • Other reading difficulties
  • Which cognitive factors are important in reading difficulties?

YARC: overview; administration; scoring; reporting

  • Early Reading: letter sound knowledge; sound deletion; sound isolation; early word recognition
  • Passage Comprehension: word recognition; oral reading accuracy; oral comprehension; oral reading rate
  • Passage Comprehension – Secondary: word recognition; silent reading comprehension; silent reading rate and oral reading fluency; testing weaker readers.

WJ 3 Achievement Tests: overview; administration; scoring; reporting

  • Reading tests: word reading; comprehension; fluency
  • Tests of written expression: spelling; fluency; sentence writing
  • Additional diagnostic tests: non word reading and spelling; phonemic awareness; reading vocabulary; oral language.

Case studies