Informal Reading Inventory (Qualitative Reading Inventory)

An informal assessment of reading inventory, including what the assessment measures, when is should be assessed, examples of questions, and the age or grade at which the assessment should be mastered.

What it measures

  • Grade level reading
  • Fluency
  • Comprehension
  • Vocabulary
  • Oral reading accuracy

When should it be assessed?

The Informal Reading Inventory is an on-going assessment, and should be completed several times throughout the child's schooling. In kindergarten, perform the Informal Reading Inventory twice per year, at mid-year and at the end of school. In first and second grades, it should be done three times, at the beginning of the school year, at mid-year, and at the end of the year. If a child is struggling, the inventory should be done more often in order to have an accurate picture of the child's progress.

Examples of assessment questions

Choose a grade level passage for the student to read. As the student is reading complete the Reading Accuracy and Reading Fluency assessments. After the student finishes the passage, check for understanding through explicit and implicit questions. Also, ask open-ended questions about the vocabulary found in the passage.

Age or grade typically mastered

This assessment can be given to students in grades one through twelve. Students should be expected to master age-appropriate material.

Reading Rockets (2004)


You are welcome to print copies or republish materials for non-commercial use as long as credit is given to Reading Rockets and the author(s). For commercial use, please contact


need reading inventory form as Flynt and Cooters are unavailable and they are very stingy with theirs.

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