Check the Specs

1. Why is text complexity important?

 The Common Core State Standards: Emphasis on Complex Text

By Tim Shanahan (One minute video.)

 Why Complex Text Matters

By David Liben (10-page article.)
An essay summarizing research on the importance of text complexity to preparing all students for college and career. 


2. Where is text complexity addressed in CCSS?

 Reading Standard 10 Vertical Progressions

Anchor Reading Standard 10 asks that students read and comprehend complex literary and informational texts independently and proficiently. These simple charts track the development of Reading Standard 10 across the grades.  


3. How do you measure text complexity?

 Guidelines for Text Complexity Analysis

Simple guidelines for analyzing a text according to the three-part model described in Appendix A of the CCSS.

  1. Short Guide to Quantitative Tools
    A simple guide to using quantitative measures to assign a text to a grade band.
  2. Qualitative Rubric for Literary and Informational Texts
    A tool to assist in the qualitative analysis of a text to locate it within a grade band.
  3. Questions for Reader and Task Considerations
    A series of questions designed to guide educators in the process of evaluating reader and task considerations around a text.

 For a more detailed look at analyzing text complexity, and to try it out on a text of your own, visit Take it for a Spin.