The Qualitative Reading Inventory-II, developed by Lauren Leslie and JoAnne Caldwell,
is an "individually administered, informal reading inventory designed to provide diagnostic
information about the conditions under which students can identify words and comprehend
text successfully and the conditions that appear to result in unsuccesful word identification,
decoding and/or comprehension. 
This is an informal reading inventory designed to assess reading ability at emergent through middle school levels. Comprehension in this assessment is measured through story retelling and comprehension questions (which are separated into explicit and implicit facts about the story). Before comprehension tests are given, a prior knowledge test is given to assess the childÕs prior knowledge in the subject area. A CD-ROM is included with this book to provide demonstrations for administration and scoring.
1. Word List
1. estimate starting point of oral reading passages
2. identify student’s decoding skills
3. determine student ability to identify words automatically
4. identify student’s knowledge of letter sounds
5. use to compare student ability to identify words in isolation vs. words in context
       What does this test tell us?
  • What words can the child read automatically when in isolation?
  • What graded reading passage should you begin with? (NOT an indication of total reading level)
  • What word attack patterns emerge for this student? (application of phonetic principles, word-analysis strategies, consistent misses of word parts or letter sounds)
  • How does this student respond to direct intervention?
2. Assessment of Prior Knowledge:


    1. to assess student’s familiarity with the topic of the selection
    2. to activate student’s background knowledge
      What does this test tell us?


  • Often, the more ideas predicted about a passage prior to reading correlates to the level of familiarity and knowledge about the main ideas contained in the selection.  This score may also help the examiner to predict student’s comprehension level on the related passage (or provide explanation for difficulty in comprehension).
  • The skill of making predictions is learned and is subject to instruction.  This item could be used after instructional intervention has been provided in this area to further assess a student’s ability to activate background knowledge and make inferences about a passage.
3. Reading Passages


  1. to determine a student’s independent, instructional and /or frustration levels for word identification in context
  2. to determine a student’s independent, instructional and /or frustration levels for comprehension
  3. to assess a student’s ability to read different types of text (eg. narrative, expository, familiar, unfamiliar, with and without pictures)
  4. to assess a student’s ability to comprehend in different modes (eg. orally or silently)
     What does this test tell us?


  • The results of this test can help determine the reading level of a student. The criteria for each level is as follows: [Independent = 90% or above, Instructional = 70%-89%; Frustrational = below 70%]
  • If scores for explicit questions are compared to scores for implicit questions, a substantial difference between these two scores may suggest that the student needs instruction in either remembering what the author stated explicitly in the text or in using clues in the text to make inferences, depending on which score is higher.