Fountas & Pinnell Benchmark Assessment System

Identify the instructional and independent reading levels of all students to plan meaningful teaching


Work out your students’ independent and instructional reading levels by observing student reading behaviours one-on-one, engage in comprehension conversations that go beyond retelling, and make informed decisions that connect assessment to instruction.

What's new in the 3rd Edition?

Adapted for the Australian market, the new 3rd Edition includes updated components, levelled books and online resources. The new edition also features:

  • A refined comprehension conversation for more rigorous administration, analysis and scoring
  • Updated Assessment Guide and recording forms
  • New Fountas & Pinnell Literacy Continuum, Expanded Edition
  • Updated levelled books including factual revisions to some nonfiction books and minor revisions to some fiction books


Shop for the Benchmark Assessment Systems

What is it?

Use the comprehensive and research-based Fountas & Pinnell Benchmark Assessment Systems to determine students' independent and instructional reading levels.

Fountas & Pinnell Benchmark Assessment Systems are:

  • Designed to accurately and reliably identify each child’s instructional and independent reading levels according to the F&P Text Level Gradient
  • Recommend a placement level for instruction
  • Document students’ progress through one-on-one formative and summative assessments.
  • Precise tools and texts to observe and quantify specific reading behaviours and interpret and use that data to plan meaningful instruction

Who is it for?

Identify each student’s reading level during this one-on-one, student-teacher assessment conference.

Each assessment enables teachers to:

  • Determine students’ instructional and independent reading levels
  • Recommend a placement level for instruction
  • Assessment Forms Book
  • Student Forms Book
  • Form initial groups for reading instruction
  • Plan for efficient and effective instruction
  • Identify students who need intervention and extra help
  • Monitor and report student progress across a school year and grade levels
  • Inform parent conferences

How is it implemented?

The Fountas & Pinnell Benchmark Assessment Systems assessments are conducted one-on-one.

In Part 1 of the assessment, the student reads aloud and talks about the system’s original, precisely levelled fiction and nonfiction books, while the teacher observes and notes the reader’s behaviours on carefully constructed forms.

In Part 2, the teacher conducts a revealing Comprehension Conversation. Optional Part 3 uses a Writing About Reading prompt to elicit responses to the text.