Teacher Rating of Oral Language and Literacy (TROLL): A Research-Based Tool

CIERA Report #3-016

David K. Dickinson, Educational Development Center
Allyssa McCabe, University of Massachusetts--Lowell
Kim Sprague, Educational Development Center

CIERA Inquiry 3: Policy and Profession
What is the Teacher Rating of Oral Language and Literacy (TROLL)? Can it provide an accurate measure of students' literacy acquisition skills?

In this article, we describe the Teacher Rating of Oral Language and Literacy (TROLL), an instrument that measures skills identified as critical in the New Standards for Speaking and Listening (Tucker & Codding, 1998). In 5-10 minutes and without prior training, teachers can assess an individual child's current standing with respect to skills that research has identified as critical for literacy acquisition. Skills assessed include language, reading, and writing abilities. TROLL has been used with over 900 low-income children. The instrument is reliable and has strong internal consistency. Its validity has been established in numerous ways; TROLL correlates significantly with scores on the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test and the Early Phonemic Awareness Profile given to the same children by trained researchers. Fall TROLL judgements of the literacy skills of these same children correlate with fall but not spring assessments of literacy skills obtained with the Early Literacy Profile. TROLL also displays instructional sensitivity.



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