Adult Literacy Education: The International Journal of Literacy, Language, and Numeracy, Improving Reading Skills for Adult Learners with Dyslexia in Incarcerated Settings with The Noah Text®-New Century Program, by Sarah Cacicio, Adult Literacy & Learning Impact Network, Winter 2024


Adults with dyslexia report struggling with reading difficulties from as early as kindergarten which impacts their learning experiences over the life span. Providing
evidence-based instruction alongside supplementary digitally-mediated reading tools such as The Noah Text®-New Century program is critical for improving learning
engagement and outcomes among adult learners with dyslexia, especially for the disproportionate number of learners with reading difficulties in incarcerated settings.
Based on the science of reading, Noah Text® is a patented method for adapting text to improve reading fluidity for learners with dyslexia. It was developed by researcher Sarah K. Blodgett, whose son struggled with reading. Noah Text® aims to improve text accessibility at the word level, building critical writing-sound pattern awareness. See Article.

Word Level Scaffolding Found in Noah Text® Builds Confidence, Fluency, Comprehension, and Orthographic Mapping Through ‘Application and Transfer’, 2023


Modeled after the famed Reading Rope created by Hollis Scarborough, this Venn diagram shows how Noah Text® can be utilized to advance students to higher level reading in addition to decodable text. A detailed description is included. See diagram. (Authors: Sarah K. Blodgett, Noah Text; Miriam Cherkes-Julkowski, Ph.D., University of Connecticut, retired; Lisa Bigney, M.Ed., Rhode Island Tutorial & Educational Services; James Griffin, New Century Education Foundation; Troy Mariage, Ph.D., Michigan State University; Ian Clemente, Ph.D. Student, Michigan State University; Elizabeth Hicks, Ph.D. Student, Michigan State University)

Significant Gains in Reading Fluency, Comprehension, and Vocabulary Found in 14 Adult Prison Inmates (11 Reading Disabled; 3 ELL) After Using Noah Text® for Two Months, Louisiana, 2022


New Century Education Foundation conducted a pilot study of their Noah Text intervention for dyslexia among incarcerated men in partnership with Michigan State University and Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections. The study was conducted over two months. The students gained substantially in oral reading fluency in plain text. Their vocabulary scores improved by a mean gain of 13%, and they achieved an average of an 11-point gain on the TABE Language and Reading; all in plain text. Some men made a year or more worth of improvement in comprehension on Woodcock-Johnson assessments. See relevant data slides. (Research Team: Dr. Troy Mariage, Ian Clemente, and Elizabeth Hicks of Michigan State University, and James Griffin, President of New Century Education Foundation)

Meaningful Improvement in Reading Fluency, Comprehension, Motivation, and Focus Found in Three Middle School Students with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders Over a 15-Week Study Utilizing Noah Text®, Michigan, 2022


New Century Education Foundation conducted a pilot study of their Noah Text dyslexia intervention among eight elementary and middle school students in a day treatment program for kids with emotional and behavioral disorders in partnership with Michigan State University. Students with emotional and behavioral disorders have a high co‐ occurrence of reading difficulties with deficits that often remain stable or increase over time. This comparative case study was conducted over 15 weeks and emphasized three middle school students’ reading, behavior, and interactions in different literacy settings. Notably, the students gained substantially in comprehension and fluency with increased motivation and focus utilizing the Noah Text lessons. See presentation slides. (Research Team: Dr. Troy Mariage, Elizabeth Hicks, and Ian Clemente of Michigan State University, and James Griffin, President of New Century Education Foundation)

Notable Advancement in Reading Fluency, Comprehension, and Vocabulary Found in Five High School Students with Reading Disabilities After Using Noah Text® for Two Weeks, New Jersey, 2022


New Century Education Foundation conducted a pilot study of their Noah Text dyslexia intervention among five high school students with identified reading disabilities. The study was conducted over a two-week period. Substantial gains were made in plain text reading in vocabulary, fluency, and comprehension. See summary.

Noah Text® Improving Literacy & Improving Lives, 2021

A one-page synopsis of research conducted by New Century Education Foundation in conjunction with researchers from Michigan State University and dyslexia interventionists from Rhode Island Tutorial and Educational Services (RITES). See synopsis.

Substantial Gains in Reading Fluency, Comprehension, and Vocabulary Found in Eight Middle School Students (7 Dyslexic; 1 Struggling Reader) After Using Noah Text® for Two Weeks, Rhode Island, 2021

New Century Education Foundation conducted a pilot summer school study of their intervention for dyslexia in partnership with Michigan State University and Rhode Island Tutorial and Educational Services (RITES), a group of Orton-Gillingham and Wilson trained reading specialists. These lessons use Noah Text® in which RITES has used for the past 5 years with success. During this short 2-week summer program, middle school students gained an average of 22% in their oral reading fluency based on DIBELS assessments at the 5th grade level (associated with a 5.5% average percentile gain). In addition, they displayed an average percentile gain of 3.9% in reading comprehension (also at the 5th grade level based on DIBELS) and an average improvement of 31% in their vocabulary scores. See video excerpt and see relevant data slides. (Research Team: Dr. Troy Mariage, Ian Clemente, and Elizabeth Hicks of Michigan State University, and James Griffin, President of New Century Education Foundation)

American Consortium for Equity in Education, “Powerful Tools for Dyslexic & Struggling Readers: Noah Text® In a Computer-Adapted Environment,” by Sarah K. Blodgett (Noah Text), Dr. Troy V. Mariage (MSU), James Griffin (New Century Education), and Ian M. Clemente, PhD candidate (MSU). May 17, 2021.

Since 2019, Noah Text® has been working on a collaborative effort, alongside New Century Education Foundation and researchers at Michigan State University, to develop specialized Noah Text® lessons for New Century’s Intelligent Tutoring System, which is incorporated into various institutions and now available for free home use. Dyslexia is the leading type of learning disability in the United States, for it is estimated that between 10-15% of Americans (or 30-45 million people) struggle to read due to having dyslexia. Reading intervention is a social justice, equity, and inclusion issue. See article.

Positive Findings Found in Students Using Noah Text®: Assessment of Noah Text® by Orton-Gillingham and Wilson Trained Teachers on 23 Dyslexic Students (Ages 12 to Adult), Compiled by Rhode Island Tutorial & Educational Services, 2020

While and after using Noah Text® with students, teachers observed: 95.7% of their students showed increased fluency/accuracy; 87% of their students showed increase in stamina/endurance; 73.9% of their students showed improvement in reading comprehension; and all the students learned to use the text quickly. See full report. 

The Science, Mapping Sound to Print, 2020

Reading requires individuals to map sound to print. Strong readers do this efficiently and effortlessly. Complex words require more cognitive resources and good working memory – this is where struggling readers and those with dyslexia need assistance. Noah Text® enables individuals to map sound to print by providing a road map highlighting the most critical features of English that are readily recognized by science. See brief chart.

An Analysis of Noah Text®, Create an Atomic Habit for Proficient Reading for Struggling Readers. Rhode Island Tutorial & Educational Services, September 20, 2019

Noah Text® Helps Readers Build Strong Reading Habits — “You see, when I dug deeper, I found that Noah Text® was breaking bad habits and replacing them with good ones! Observing students read over a period of time allows one to witness the transformation. Often, you will see struggling readers randomly guess at unknown words, skip over them, or anxiously use decoding strategies that don’t work (bad habit). This habit is even more obvious when you have students read from pseudo word lists. Noah Text®, however, enables readers to see patterns in a clear, simple way for better decoding, which you can see enhances their word analysis skills (good habit). In other words, they’re utilizing the right system.” See full article and relevant chart.

Positive Findings Found in Middle School Students Using Noah Text®: Montville Public Schools, Report of Efficacy Utilizing Noah Text® in the Classroom, Amy Geary, M.S. Special Education & Literacy, Connecticut, 2016-2017

All of the students who participated in reading books using Noah Text® were enthusiastic to have a text that allowed them to read with ease. This increased their stamina and confidence, while reducing their reading errors. Students frequently commented that the use of Noah Text® was beneficial. See full report.

Bridging the Divide, How Noah Text creates a bridge between whole language and phonics. Sarah K. Blodgett on LinkedIn, November 14, 2016

To the science of phonics, Noah Text® honors what is systematic within our language. It honors onset/rime instruction, vowel sound instruction, and syllable segmentation — all things we know enhance phonological awareness and fluency. Phonics teachers have been highlighting these patterns with their students for years. Noah Text® is simply embedding this practice in real and enriching texts. As well, it’s recognizing that the English writing system is extremely inconsistent with its spelling, as research shows fifty percent of our language is of foreign origin. Thus, Noah Text® is giving saliency and order to a system that can sometimes overwhelm both young readers and struggling readers — alleviating the burden our complex writing system puts on working memory. See full article.

Research Article, The Literacy Crisis: What we can learn from languages throughout the world to solve this problem. Sarah K. Blodgett, August, 2016

English has one of deepest, most inconsistent writing systems in the world, such that learning to read English takes 2-3 times longer compared to most other languages. | The key predictor of children requiring intensive reading instruction in English is poor phonological awareness skills, yet this is rarely a concern in languages with consistent writing systems, as the predictability of the writing system itself ameliorates this issue. | In predictable languages, the crucial indicator of future reading difficulty is naming speed deficit, not poor phonological awareness. | The complexity of the English writing system exasperates working memory. | Dyslexia in English is marked by both slow reading speed and problems with accuracy; in predictable languages, it’s predominantly marked by slow reading speed. | Predictable writing systems provide predictable patterns: predictable one syllable words become predictable multisyllabic words.| The unpredictability of the English writing system often requires error prone strategies to decode words. | Syllable segmentation is much more difficult in printed English, yet we know this insight facilitates word decoding and fluency. As well, predictable writing systems have clear vowel identifiers. Syllable segmentation and vowel sound instruction are all critical features outlined in the NRP report to facilitate phonological awareness and fluency. | Explicit, systematic reading instruction that highlights patterns enables learners to read fluidly and reduces the ambiguity of the English writing system. | Older students that struggled to learn to read in their early years need continued support in fluency. | Countries throughout the world are outpacing the U.S. in basic skills (including reading) at an alarming rate. | Humans developed our writing systems so that we can better communicate with one another; the ability to read is critical. Thus, the writing system we inherit cannot be taken lightly. | English spelling reform has been debated throughout our history. Noah Text® is answering that call for reformation without altering the print system. Noah Text® is simply giving readers the key to the puzzle by highlighting critical word patterns – enhancing reading fluency, stamina, and confidence, while building reading skill. | Noah Text® allows readers to see sound-parts within words, providing a way for struggling readers to decode and enunciate words that are too difficult to access. In turn, the improvement in reading accuracy and fluency free up cognitive resources readers can devote to comprehending the meaning of the text, enabling them to truly enjoy reading while building reading skill. See full article.