Measures and References: Alphabet Knowledge

Return to Alphabet Knowledge factor page.


Numerous measures exist to gain a full picture of a student's learning strengths and challenges. Following are examples of measures used to assess this Learner Factor. These measures should be administered and interpreted by experienced professionals.

Phonological Awareness Literacy Screening (PALS) (Invernizzi, Meier, Swank, & Juel, 2004): Contains a subtest that screens for Alphabet Knowledge by asking for the name and sound of random upper- and lower-case letters


Bosse, M. L., Chaves, N., Largy, P., & Valdois, S. (2015). Orthographic learning during reading: The role of whole‐word visual processing. Journal of Research in Reading, 38(2), 141-158.

Burgess, S. R., Hecht, S. A., & Lonigan, C. J. (2002). Relations of the home literacy environment (HLE) to the development of reading-related abilities: A one-year longitudinal study. Reading Research Quarterly, 37(4), 408-426.

Burgess, S. R., & Lonigan, C. J. (1998). Bidirectional relations of phonological sensitivity and prereading abilities: Evidence from a preschool sample. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 70(2), 117-141.

Castles, A., Rastle, K., & Nation, K. (2018). Ending the reading wars: Reading acquisition from novice to expert. Psychological Science in the Public Interest, 19(1), 5-51.

De Jong, P. F., & Olson, R. K. (2004). Early predictors of letter knowledge. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 88(3), 254-273.

De Jong, P. F., & van der Leij, A. (2003). Developmental changes in the manifestation of a phonological deficit in dyslexic children learning to read a regular orthography. Journal of Educational Psychology, 95(1), 22-40.

Ehri, L. C., Nunes, S. R., Stahl, S. A., & Willows, D. M. (2001). Systematic phonics instruction helps students learn to read: Evidence from the National Reading Panel's meta-analysis. Review of Educational Research, 71(3), 393-447.

Guo, Y., Justice, L. M., Kaderavek, J. N., & McGinty, A. (2012). The literacy environment of preschool classrooms: Contributions to children's emergent literacy growth. Journal of Research in Reading, 35(3), 308-327.

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Justice L.M., & Ezell, H.K. (2001). Word and print awareness in 4-year-old children. Child Language Teaching and Therapy, 17(3), 207-225.

Lerner, M. D., & Lonigan, C. J. (2016). Bidirectional relations between phonological awareness and letter knowledge in preschool revisited: A growth curve analysis of the relation between two code-related skills. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 144, 166-183.

McBride-Chang, C. (1999). The ABCs of the ABCs: The development of letter-name and letter-sound knowledge. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly 45(2), 285-308.

Piasta, S. B., Purpura, D. J., & Wagner, R. K. (2010). Fostering alphabet knowledge development: A comparison of two instructional approaches. Reading and Writing, 23(6), 607-626.

Rouse, H.L., & Fantuzzo, J.W. (2006). Validity of the dynamic indicators for basic early literacy skills as an indicator of early literacy for urban kindergarten children. School Psychology Review, 35(3), 341-355.

Scarborough, H. S. (1998). Early identification of children at risk for reading disabilities: Phonological awareness and some other promising predictors. In B. K. Shapiro, P. J. Accardo, & A. J. Capute (Eds.), Specific reading disability: A view of the spectrum (pp. 75-119). Timonium, MD: York Press.

Shaul, S., & Nevo, E. (2015). Different speed of processing levels in childhood and their contribution to early literacy and reading abilities. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 32, 193-203.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, & Administration for Children and Families. (2005). Head Start impact study: First year findings. Washington, DC.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, & Administration for Children and Families. (2006). Head Start FACES findings: New research on Head Start outcomes and program quality. Washington, DC.