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Istation Reading – Upper Elementary, Middle School

Essa Rating
No. Studies
No. Students
Average Effect Size

Program Description

Istation Reading is a computer-adaptive testing system that helps track students’ progress in reading from prekindergarten through 8th grade. Based on the science of reading, it assesses important areas like phonemic awareness, reading comprehension, listening comprehension, letter knowledge, alphabetic decoding, fluency, spelling, and vocabulary. Both the formative assessment and supplemental curriculum adapt to each student’s ability by changing the difficulty of questions based on their answers, ensuring a personalized experience. This helps accurately measure students’ skills and provides instant, easily interpretable reports. These reports highlight students’ strengths and areas for improvement, helping teachers make informed decisions for instruction and intervention. Additionally, Istation Reading’s reports can alert teachers to students who need additional intervention and provide access to a wide range of teaching materials and lessons.

Program Outcomes

Istation was evaluated in a retrospective study involving 884 grade 5-7 students attending 11 schools in a large Texas school district during the 2022-2023 school year. The student characteristics were as follows: 56% Hispanic, 26% Black, 13% Asian, 12% disabled/special education, and 87% receiving free- and reduced-priced lunch. The treatment group was comprised of students who had greater than 0 minutes of curriculum usage. Propensity score matching was used to match students within schools on demographic data and baseline achievement. Students who used Istation demonstrated significantly greater growth than control students not using the program on the STAAR Reading assessment (effect size = +0.10), qualifying Istation Reading – Upper Elementary, Middle School for an ESSA Promising rating.

Staffing Requirements

Istation is designed for use in classrooms, and can be implemented by teachers, interventionists, or paraprofessionals.

Professional Development/Training

A variety of professional learning is available to train teachers, instructional coaches, principals, and others. Formats include virtual and in-person training. Professional Development sessions are conducted by qualified professionals with classroom experience.


Students can use Istation on desktops, laptops, or tablets.