We have assembled a small collection of frequently asked questions.
As new questions arise, we will update this page, but feel free to send us an email if you have questions beyond these answers.
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Most people will see some improvement almost immediately, but for more substantial and sustainable improvement it takes more time. For some people, it takes weeks and for other people it takes months. Evidence from our customers indicate that most students will improve at least 20% to 40% in their reading speed while maintaining 75% or better comprehension. That amount of improvement will shave off 10 to 20 minutes per hour of reading. Those are realistic and conservative numbers. The trick is to spend 15 minutes within the program, going through 5 Course Mode activities three times per week. Most schools have their students perform two course levels in a semester (over a sixth month period.) It will take about a month to get through one course level if you use the program three times per week for 15 minutes each training session.
As for lasting changes, we have some pretty compelling evidence. The U.S. Air Force and U.S. Naval academies, along with many schools have been using this product for years, and the results have been fabulous. However, the important thing to keep in mind is that it is not a quick fix. It's a progressive process like exercise, where we train the eyes and brain to process more, faster, and with better comprehension.
When it comes to taking tests, and we all hate taking tests, keep in mind that the tests you take with AceReader are purely for our application to measure your success and to calibrate the system to set a new BRS. Some people make the mistake of thinking this is a testing tool, it really is not about tests.
We recommend AceReader for students in the 3rd grade on up through adult. This does not mean that younger students can't use AceReader, however students should be past their decoding phases and know how to read before using AceReader. AceReader is not a "how to read program", but instead a "how to read better program".
The Base Reading Speed (BRS) number is number we use to track your day to day progress. Your BRS number will move around, up and down with time. Keep in mind that it is a BASE number we use to drive the speed of the drills and activities, not a measure of your real reading speed.
When it comes to permanence, reading is much like many skills, if you don't use it you have a tendency to lose it. We have many customers who have continued to use the product on a maintenance basis for years, to maintain their skill set. The real idea is to retrain and break bad habits, thereby improving your reading ability to where you can read just as effectively offline with real books.
We certainly have some power users, (so to say,) who have gone a little crazy with the product and have reading speeds above 800 words per minute, but that should not be anyone's goal. Just a 20% to 40% improvement can be dramatic is saving people time in reading, and more importantly it's not about the speed, but the comprehension. In fact we push your speed at points to force you to comprehend more under pressure, so when you are reading at a normal pace, comprehension becomes a breeze.
Our lowest text level is grade 1 and highest is grade 12/13/adult/college.
The text used for the stories and drill text was leveled using common readability formulas. These formulas are "grade levels" according to those formulas. The Spache formula was used to level, our levels 1 through 3. The Dale Chall formula was used to level our levels 4 through 13. These formulas take into consideration things like: word length, number of syllables, number of words per sentence, presence of certain words considered easy and the exclusion of proper nouns.
In other words, our levels map to the following grade levels:
- AceReader Level 01 is grade 1 according to the Spache formula
- AceReader Level 02 is grade 2 according to the Spache formula
- AceReader Level 03 is grade 3 according to the Spache formula
- AceReader Level 04 is grade 4 according to the Dale Chall formula
- AceReader Level 05 is grade 5 according to the Dale Chall formula
- AceReader Level 06 is grade 6 according to the Dale Chall formula
- AceReader Level 07 is grade 7 according to the Dale Chall formula
- AceReader Level 08 is grade 8 according to the Dale Chall formula
- AceReader Level 09 is grade 9 according to the Dale Chall formula
- AceReader Level 10 is grade 10 according to the Dale Chall formula
- AceReader Level 11 is grade 11 according to the Dale Chall formula
- AceReader Level 12 is grade 12 according to the Dale Chall formula
- AceReader Level 13 is grade 13 according to the Dale Chall formula
Note: We also cross checked with the Fry Graph.
Having said that, we like to remind people that newspapers are written for adults and newspapers are typically written at about the 5th or 6th grade level. Most people typically read material that is at the lower levels for a good portion of what we typically read each day. Because of this, we prefer to think of our levels as "text complexity levels" instead of as "grade levels" since we don't want people to think that they should use a level that matches their age or grade.
Note: We have been told by some elementary teachers that our level 1 seems more like grade level 2 material.
We also believe that since we are trying to train proper eye movement, we recommend starting with lower level material. Most all students start with level 3 (including college students). We normally recommend starting with level 1 or 2 only for early readers in grades 3 or below.