Validating scales for the early development of writing proficiency




student texts, early writing development, Rasch model, validating linguistic framework, lower primary school, Denmark


This paper aims to validate scales for the early development of writing proficiency based on a framework used to linguistically describe multiple dimensions of writing development in 6–9 year-old Danish-speaking students and to lay the statistical foundation for empirically describing proficiency levels in emergent writers. The analysis is based on the Rasch model and was conducted on texts (n = 803) written by Year 0–2 students using the computer app WriteReader. The paper introduces both the model and the theory behind it, including the rationale for using this model, and it presents the main analytical steps taken and decisions made in the study, which is part of the large-scale Danish research project entitled Teaching Platform for Developing and Automatically Tracking Early Stage Literacy Skills (ATEL, 2018–2023). The results show that it is possible to identify detailed levels of early writing development in four dimensions: 1) text construction, 2) sentence construction, 3) verbals, and 4) modifiers.


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How to Cite

Bundsgaard, J., Kabel, K., & Bremholm, J. (2022). Validating scales for the early development of writing proficiency. Writing and Pedagogy, 13(1-3), 89–120.



Young Students’ Writing Development