The Macquarie Online Test Interface (MOTIf) is an online facility designed to automatically administer, score and provide reports for cognitive tests of reading.

Developed by ARC-supported researchers in the Department of Cognitive Science at Macquarie University and the ARC Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders, the tests are available online at no charge to registered teachers, clinicians and researchers, with the results stored in a secure and private user database.

Under the lead of Professor Genevieve McArthur, Dr Saskia Kohnen, and Professor Anne Castles, the tests on MOTIf have been developed using detailed theoretical models of reading, and so allow for precise assessment and targeted intervention, tailored to a child’s individual needs. This assists professionals in identifying and providing support for the significant proportion of children who struggle to learn to read: according to data from the Australian Council for Educational Research, one in seven 15-year-olds currently fail to meet basic reading standards.

Most of the tests currently available on MOTIf are designed for primary school children. However, the researchers are working to develop high quality and free-of-charge assessments directly catering for the high school student population. These tests, which will allow detailed analysis of the reading and spelling needs of older students, are an example of how MOTIf is both powerful and flexible enough to respond to the specific needs of its users.

With over 10,000 registered users from more than 20 countries, MOTIf has become a one-stop-shop of comprehensive theoretically-based evaluations of reading, spelling and spoken language skills.

Image: Mother helping daughter with homework.