Reading and comprehension training with Reader’s Edge Software
The Reader’s Edge is a speed reading program offered by the Literacy Company. This software is for Windows only and depending on the level you want costs $79.95 to $149.95. Lower price is for the basic version and the higher price is for the “Professional” version.
This program is designed to help you in learning to read faster and build your comprehension.
Reader’s Edge 2017 Features
The program is available either as a download, on disc for PCs or it can be accessed online for PCs and Macs. All of the delivery systems have the same content for users. Basic version is available for only one computer and three users. Professional version authorizes two computers and unlimited users.
There is also a Network version available for institutional use and the cost is based on the number of computers authorized.
Features of the Basic and Professional Version are the same except there are a few additional features for the Professional. They include:
- 8 exercises for the Basic version. 12 for the Professional version.
- 200+ comprehension tests
- Step by step lessons.
- Import your own material to read
- Exercise Coach
- Assessment and progress reports.
- Personalized user settings.
- Free updates for life.
The exercises are the heart of Reader’s Edge software. They teach you different skills necessary to increase reading speed. They are:
- Motility training, which increases your ability to process information.
- Horizontal Span helps you decrease sub-vocalizing.
- Vertical Span enables you to process groups of words.
- Marquee Text scrolls text to simulate the movement of your eyes.
- Highlight Text reduces eye fixations by increasing the number of words read.
- Word Groups increase the number of words read in groups.
- Say It, which displays letters and sounds for them.
The Professional version has all of the above and Continuous Text, the ability to manually change the reading speed of material, high speed practice, and audio readings.
- 200+ comprehension tests
- Comprehension tests cover different subjects and are from various authors and content providers. These tests see if you are understanding what you are reading.
- Step by step lessons
Reader’s Edge Software: How it works?
There is no guesswork in how to use the program. The coursework is presented in simple steps to ensure you don’t miss any lessons.
Import you own texts
You can import texts from your clipboard, documents file, and network. In addition, you can import foreign language texts.
The Exercise Coach is a feature unique to The Reader’s Edge. It monitors your work and gives suggestions on where to proceed to improve your skill.
Assessment and Progress Reports
Your progress is tracked and can be printed out or saved for future reference.
Personalize your experience
You can set the color of the background and other features so that you have a pleasurable learning experience. This isn’t available on other programs I checked.
Once you have purchased the program you have access to any updates that the company releases. On the web site they had 10 updates they had released. It is nice to know you won’t have to buy a new version every couple of years to keep up on improvements.
How do users like it?
This program is sold exclusively by The Literacy Company. There are no reviews available for it except from the company web site. However, those reviews are glowing and I noticed that they have a very impressive list of corporate purchasers. They include the U.S. Army, NASA, numerous colleges and the Boys and Girls Club.
I tried the demo mode which is an on-line based demonstration of a few limited features. The program is visually appealing and does have a good variety of exercises to use. There is a good variety of reading comprehension texts and I was happy to see that they had some business topics and not just topics for students.
Reader’s Edge Pros and Cons
- Good variety of exercises
- Excellent subjects and variety for the comprehension tests.
- Guided lessons with an exercise coach
- Ability to import you own texts.
- Free updates on the program
Prices are higher than other programs I looked at and I don’t like the two tiered pricing system. The extra benefits don’t seem to justify the extra $70.
- The amount of preloaded material is less that other similar programs.
- There are no games in the software, games are important to improving skill and motivation.
- No Mac version of the software
Reader’s Edge Review: The Verdict
Reader’s Edge is a good product and has a good variety of exercises and activities.
It certainly will help you increase your reading speed and comprehension as long as you do the work. This is a fine product to use but it is not as economical as other programs; however, it is also not the most expensive. I recommend this product if less expensive applications on the market don’t meet your needs.