Improve your reading skills with the RocketReader program
RocketReader is an online speed reading course designed to help you increase your speed and comprehension. The program is only available online and is more expensive compared to the other programs that I reviewed. Pricing begins at $139 for a three month membership and rises to $259 for one year. Paying $333 will gain you access to the program for a lifetime. There is also special pricing for schools that want to use it on networked computers.
This program uses a combination of drills, exercises and comprehension tests to increase your reading speed. It tracks your progress and allows you to import your own texts.
RocketReader Highlights and Features
The program offers the following:
- 500+ reading texts
- Comprehension Tests
- Memory Development Module
- SAT module to help students
- Speed Drills
- Flash Training
- Ability to add own texts
- Capable of printing results and graphs
500+ reading texts
There are more than 500 reading texts in RocketReader, this certainly helps in keeping the learning interesting. These are not complete texts but excerpts from many popular books. The subject material ranges from young readers to “cool” teen readers, classics, science, history, SAT, people and fun readings. The range of readings is acceptable from as young as 7 up to older adult.
Each reading text and speed text comes with its own set of comprehension tests so you can see how much material is actually retained. The tests are multiple choice and over all there are more than 10,000 questions. The test can also be created for the learner by a teacher or parent.
Memory Development Module
RocketReader Online has built in memory tests for all of the 500+ readings. They are also available for the mathematics, English, science, and SAT modules. You can also develop your own memory tests and learn everything from facts and figures to theorems and foreign language verb conjugation. These test are created in an easy drop down menu format.
Speed is accomplished by eliminating re-reading sentences and presenting blocks of words. Re-reading prior sentences is one of the biggest problems of slow readers so the program will present blocks of words and cover up previous sentences as the reading proceeds. You can increase the speed of this exercise as you improve. Even if you are an accomplished speed reader; the tests move fast enough to increase your speed.
Student getting studying for the formidable SAT test have a tremendous resource in RocketReader Online. This module contains critical reasoning, vocabulary development, sentence completions, roots, prefixes and suffixes, and maths questions. Preparation is the key to success in the SAT and the large quantity and quality of the questions provided by the program is impressive. Maths problems are also included with algebra, geometry and arithmetic. Time management during the test is also taught so the student has a time plan before the test begins.
Flash training allows you to read groups of words with a single glance. As you get better at this you can add more words to the group. This is a big help in defeating sub-vocalization, the habit of silently speaking each word. It also helps in keeping your eyes from seeing each syllable of the word.
Ability to add your own texts
You can import your own PDF, text and Word files into the program. This allows you to learn with material used in your real world. You can also devise your own comprehension and memory tests from this material.
Results that can be graphed and printed
A teacher or parent can print out or graph the success and progress of their students. Graphs are especially useful because the picture of a rising reading speed can be very motivational.
RocketReader Pros and Cons
- Plenty of readings and exercises
- Memory Development Module
- SAT practice module
- Ability to develop own memory and comprehension tests
- Importing of your own reading texts
- The program is available only online. If you are somewhere without internet access you can’t use it.
- The reading texts are only excerpts, not full books.
- This was the most expensive reading program I encountered.
- Tech support is slow. They offer email, fax and regular mail as a way to contact them. However, the web site states there may be as much as a 5 working day wait for a response. That is completely unacceptable.
- The web site is confusing with two different ordering pages and multiple pages with the same information.
RocketReader Review: Summary
RocketReader certainly could help you improve your reading speed but at a cost that is much higher than other popular speed reading software on the market. The need for internet access to use the program is also a big restriction. While I think it delivers on the promise to increase your reading speed the extra cost is not justified. You can do just as well with other programs and spend a lot less money. One cheaper alternative is 7-SpeedReading which is cloud based and allows you to create your own lessons.
Support: The company offers a Frequently Asked Questions section online. Alternative support options include a toll free number in the US, but also email, fax and mail contact opportunities for technical supports.