Only those students who have not yet mastered specific phonics skills for the patterns that have been taught and should be mastered.


Whenever you need to determine which phonics skills need to be taught; and to determine if the student is learning phonics skills that are being taught.


To know which specific phonics skills to teach and determine if the student is making progress.


One-on-one using two computers. If being administered remotely, the student can also use a smart phone. Device one is used for scoring and recording student responses, device two is used to display words for the student to read aloud. You control the student screen via internet, minimizing testing time and eliminating the need for paper and pencils.


Words are scored at the error level by clicking on the specific letters the student misreads. This scoring feature automatically produces reports allowing you to accurately identify specific phonics skills students need instruction on. There is also a note taking option, allowing you to track and record exactly what the student said.


The assessment is NOT timed, but students should only be allowed three seconds per word, otherwise the word should be marked wrong. Depending on the phonics category, the student will read between 18 to 80 words. It only takes between 2 to 5 minutes per assessment, including set-up, reading the directions, and scoring each word.


Easy to use with features like key words making it easy to administer and score. Most people learn how to use KeyPhonics in under 1 hour.

Skills Assesed

Includes 102 foundational phonics skills within the 12 most critical phonics patterns . Depending on the category, the diagnostic tests range from 18 words (contractions) up to 80 words (short vowel with suffix). The words are all nonsense (except contractions) and specifically measure single and multisyllabic patterns making it appropriate for any grade level. For example, within the CVC category there are 5 specific phonics patterns: short vowels a, e, i, o, u. Each specific pattern is represented 5 times for a total of 25 words on the CVC diagnostic test. This allows educators to determine which phonics pattern students have mastered and which need to be taught.

Instant Reports

Available at the grade, class, and individual level. They can be viewed right away or can be retrieved and printed later. Results allow you to determine:

  • Which of the students in my class have similar phonics needs.
  • Which students in my small group have similar phonics needs.
  • Which specific phonics pattern does this student need help with.
  • If my student improving on specific phonics patterns.

Linked to Instruction

Reports allow you to make the following instructional determinations.

Which phonics skills should I teach:

  • Are there phonics skills I need to teach (i.e., skills have not yet been learned)
  • Are there phonics skills I need to review/reteach (i.e., skills that were once mastered but students are now struggling with)
  • Are there phonics skills I can ignore (i.e., skills are mastered and I can focus on teaching other skills

How should I group students:

  • Which phonics skills should I teach whole class (i.e., most students need instruction on this skill)
  • Which phonics skills should I teach small group (i.e., only a few students need help with this skill)
  • Which phonics skills should I teach one-on-one (i.e., only 1 student is struggling with the skill)