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TORCH - Test of Reading Comprehensions

TORCH is an Australian test of Reading Comprehension that measures the reading comprehension skills of students. TORCH was first developed by Western Australian Education Department. It helps teachers to understand and interpret performance in reading comprehension skills and provides the opportunity to compare student performance with an Australia-wide sample of over 7000 students from years 3 to 10.

TORCH: Purpose

TORCH is developed to investigate, interpret, determine and understand the students reading comprehension skills. The TORCH results help to compare the performance and measure progress of the students.

TORCH: Eligibility

Students from Years 3–10 are eligible.

TORCH: Duration

TORCH is non-timed test.
Total time duration: 30–45 minutes (group or individual)

TORCH: Format

General Vocabulary
Measures understanding of related sets of vocabulary items.
  • No. of items: 25 items
  • Duration: 5-10 mins

Syntactic Similarities

Measures understanding of meaningfully similar but syntactically different sentence structure.
  • No. of questions: 20 items
  • Duration: 5-15 mins.

Paragraph Reading

Measures ability to answer questions related to story-like paragraphs.
  • No. of questions: 6 paragraphs with 5 questions each

  • Duration: 10-15 mins.

Sentence Sequencing

Measures ability to order sentences into plausible paragraphs.
  • No. of questions: 10 items
  • Duration: 10-15mins.

Content Area Vocabularies

Math, Social Science, Science: Measures Understanding of words associated w/each subject.
  • No. of questions: 25 items per subject
  • Time limit: 5-10 mins.

Reading the Directions of School Work

Measures Understanding of written directions, commonly found in schoolwork.
  • No. of questions: 25 items
  • Duration: 5-15 mins.

TORCH: Advantages

TORCH can be used for a variety of purposes:
  • Allows teachers to match the difficulty of the test with the expected level of achievement of each student.
  • Help appraise the extent to which objectives of the school reading course of study are being accomplished
  • To identify students who are making unsatisfactory progress so that they may be given special attention.
  • to locate areas of weakness and strength for individuals or within a class
  • To compare the reading abilities of students and track reading progress over time

Method of Scoring

Method of Scoring Raw scores for each individual subtest are calculated by hand.
  • For the general vocabulary, syntactic similarities, paragraph reading, math, social studies & science vocabulary and reading the directions of school work subtests, each correct answer is given a score of 1 and an incorrect answer is given a score of 0.

  • For the Sentence Sequencing subtest, a score of 0, 2,3,4,5 are possible for each item.
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