Text Dependent Analysis (TDA) Toolkit

Text dependent analysis logo, CFA logo and Pennsylvania DOE logo

This toolkit is designed to provide teachers, curriculum coordinators and school leaders with the information and resources necessary to understand the underlying expectations of text dependent analysis. Additional instructional resources are included to support the implementation of text dependent analysis in the classroom.

The Case for Shifting Curriculum and Instruction

Text dependent analysis is much more than an item type on a state test; it’s a cognitively complex expectation. At the Center, we work with states and districts to help them understand the curriculum and instructional implications of teaching students the underlying knowledge and skills necessary to respond to questions or prompts requiring analysis.

This paper explains the characteristics of a text-dependent analysis prompt, whether for a state assessment or for instruction as outlined in the Common Core State Standards. It describes the literacy research that supports the use of a text dependent analysis prompt as necessary for deeper learning, explains what is meant by college- and career-readiness and how an analytic response to text supports this readiness, and highlights some implications of text dependent analysis for instructional and curriculum decision-making.

Text Dependent Analysis: The Need for a Shift in Instruction and Curriculum
Video module

Text Dependent Analysis: K-3 Exploratory Study Report

For additional reading about creating systemic change with text dependent analysis, see our case studies. To learn more about analysis, please visit our blogs.

Moving Into Text Dependent Analysis

Listed below are the key types of resources necessary for understanding text dependent analysis and implementing analysis instruction in the classroom. Scroll down for details on each.

Text Dependent Analysis Instructional Resources ⬇️

Narrative Text: TDA Close Reading Lesson Plans (grades K-8) ⬇️

Narrative Text: Samples of Annotated Student Responses to TDA Prompts ⬇️

TDA Replacement Units for Narrative Texts (grades 3-8) ⬇️

Informational Text: TDA Close Reading Lesson Plans (grades K-8) ⬇️

Deconstructed Standards Leading to Analysis (grades K-8) ⬇️

Text-Dependent Analysis Video Modules ⬇️

Text Dependent Analysis Instructional Resources

Below is a set of instructional resources developed to help educators understand and teach the underlying components of analysis, and support student responses to a text dependent analysis prompt.

Understanding TDA(video module)
The Anatomy of TDA Prompts                       (video module)
Selecting Complex Text for Analysis(video module)
The Difference Between Inference and Analysis(video module)
Purposeful Annotations for TDA(video module)
Close Reading Questions Leading to Analysis(video module)
Analyzing Reading Elements & Structures (video module)
Collaborative Discussions for Close Reading(video module)
Modeling a TDA Response(video module)
Purpose and Use of TDA Learning Progressions-K-8                                          (video module)
Student Work Analysis Using TDA Learning Progressions(video module)

Narrative Text: TDA Close Reading Lesson Plans  (Grades K-8)

The text-dependent analysis close reading lessons are designed to be example pathways for teaching comprehension and analysis of the reading elements found in narrative texts. These plans guide teachers through the planning and teaching of each lesson and modeling the responses to a TDA prompt.

Developing Close Reading Lessons Leading to Analysis(video module)
Grades K-2 Analysis of Characters and Author’s Message (The Three Little Dassies)
Grade 3 Analysis of Characterization and Central Message (Because of Winn-Dixie)
Grade 4 Analysis of Characterization and Theme (Blueberry Picking)
Grade 5 Analysis of Characterization and Theme (Lemonade: The Musical)
Grade 6 Analysis of Characterization and Plot Events (The Cormorant in My Bathtub)
Grade 7 Analysis of Author’s Craft and Theme (Uncle Timothy’s Ships)
Grade 8 Analysis of Author’s Word Choice/Techniques and Theme (Caged Bird)

Narrative Text: Samples of Annotated Student Responses to TDA Prompts

The TDA Learning Progressions describe student work that characterizes each level of mastery, from a beginning TDA writer to one who is meeting the expectations of text dependent analysis essay writing. Teachers can use the TDA LPs to identify students’ strengths and needs based on what they can do at specific points in time.

These insights inform teachers’ instructional decision-making about moving student comprehension, analysis, and writing to the next level. The Annotated Student Work Samples use the learning progression levels (beginning, emerging, developing, and meeting) to identify students’ strengths and areas of need in the underlying components of text-dependent analysis (reading comprehension, analysis, and essay writing).

Analyzing TDA Responses Using the TDA Learning Progressions (video module)
TDA-Grades K-2 Annotated Student Responses
TDA-Grade 3 Annotated Student Responses
TDA-Grade 4 Annotated Student Responses
TDA-Grade 5 Annotated Student Responses
TDA-Grade 6 Annotated Student Responses
TDA-Grade 7 Annotated Student Responses
TDA-Grade 8 Annotated Student Responses

Narrative Text: TDA Replacement Units (Grades 3-8)

Successfully analyzing text, at any grade level, requires more than a lesson that guides students in responding to a text-dependent analysis prompt for one particular text. Students need to engage in a series of coherent units throughout the entire year that systematically promote deeper learning and analysis of the reading/literary elements.

These Replacement Units are intended to supplant ineffective units that do not move beyond superficial understandings, knowledge, and skills of English language arts. This is not to suggest that the selected texts in current units of instruction are not complex or appropriate. In fact, there are many high-quality texts in anthologies and other resources that are currently used in classrooms, schools, and districts.

Replacement Units provide teachers with a way to reshuffle the text so students can dive deeply into comprehension and analysis of a small set of reading/ literary elements using a variety of texts, and demonstrate their ability to respond to a TDA prompt in writing.

Developing Replacement Units Leading to Analysis (video module)
Grade 3 – Analyzing Characterization and Central Message
Grade 4 – Analyzing Character and Theme
Grade 5 – Analyzing Character and Theme
Grade 6 – Analyzing Character and Plot Events
Grade 7 – Analyzing Author’s Craft and Theme
Grade 8 – Analyzing Author’s Word Choice/Techniques and Theme

Informational Text: TDA Close Reading Lesson Plans (Grades K-8)

The text-dependent analysis close reading lessons are designed to be example pathways for teaching comprehension and analysis of the reading elements found in informational texts. These plans guide teachers through the planning and teaching of each lesson, and model responses to TDA prompts.

Grades K-2 – Analysis of Text Features and Main Idea (Lizards)
Grade 3 – Analysis of Key Details and Main Idea (Be Nice to Spiders!)
Grade 4 – PDF link coming
Grade 5 – PDF link coming
Grade 6 – PDF link coming
Grade 7 – Analysis of Text Structure and Central Idea (The Birth of the Blues)
Grade 8 – PDF link coming

Deconstructed Standards

Teaching students to successfully demonstrate comprehension and analysis requires deconstructing the underlying knowledge, skills, and patterns of reasoning for the relevant grade-level standards. This set of grade-level deconstructed standards supports all curriculum and instruction and is a resource for teachers as they lead students to analyze texts

Using the Grades K-8 Deconstructed Standards(video module)
Kindergarten Deconstructed Standards
Grade 1 Deconstructed Standards
Grade 2 Deconstructed Standards
Grade 3 Deconstructed Standards
Grade 4 Deconstructed Standards
Grade 5 Deconstructed Standards
Grade 6 Deconstructed Standards
Grade 7 Deconstructed Standards
Grade 8 Deconstructed Standards

Text Dependent Analysis Toolkit: Video Modules

Responding to text dependent analysis questions requires students to draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research. Students must read literary and/or informational text and write an essay response that draws evidence, both explicit and implicit, from the text to support their analysis using effective written communication knowledge and skills. This practice of close, analytic reading requires students to critically examine a text to analyze the deep structures and big ideas and then provide evidence from the text in support of their responses.

TDA prompts, therefore, represent a move beyond general reading comprehension questions such as “What is the main idea?” to specific questions that require students to draw evidence from the text to defines their response and explain the relevance of that evidence in writing.

This series of video modules was created to help educators understand and deepen their knowledge of text-dependent analysis questions.

All resources created by Jeri Thompson, a senior associate at the Center for Assessment, for the Pennsylvania Department of Education.