BOULDER, Colo.–April 24, 2007–Pearson Knowledge Technologies (PKT) today launched WriteToLearn 3.0, the newest update of its innovative Web-based learning tool for developing writing and reading comprehension skills. Offering both summary and essay writing activities, WriteToLearn now provides students with expanded feedback on their essays and gives teachers a tool for targeting their students with ability-appropriate reading passages.
With WriteToLearn, students practice essay writing and summarization skills, and their efforts are measured by the state-of-the-art Knowledge Analysis Technologies (KAT) engine, which automatically evaluates the meaning of text by examining whole passages. The KAT engine is a unique automated assessment technology that evaluates the meaning of text, not just grammatical correctness or spelling.
WriteToLearn 3.0 now gives student writing a score for each of six traits of writing: ideas, organization, conventions, sentence fluency, word choice and voice. WriteToLearn 3.0 also offers students expanded feedback on how to improve their essays and their scores on each of the traits.
The more than 100 reading passages available for summarizing in WriteToLearn 3.0 now have Lexile® measures. As the most widely adopted reading measure, The Lexile Framework for Reading measures both reader ability and text difficulty on the same scale.
"Teachers tell us that students find WriteToLearn an engaging and motivational environment for practicing and refining their reading and summarizing skills. Students love the visual appeal and the immediate feedback and come to class excited about completing the activities," said Lynn Streeter, president, Pearson Knowledge Technologies. "Now with the enhancements in WriteToLearn 3.0, we are taking our premier tool for developing writing and reading comprehension skills to the next level by providing even deeper evaluation of essay writing as well as access to the industry-standard Lexile measures for matching students with text."
One example of an educational program that is using WriteToLearn to improve student reading and writing abilities is East Palo Alto Tennis and Tutoring (EPATT), a unique, nonprofit afterschool program at Stanford University, East Palo Alto, Calif. Many of the students are learning English as a second language and, as a result, are struggling writers. EPATT academic director Kesha Weekes said WriteToLearn is helping to change that.
"These kids want to write now, and that is amazing," said Weekes, who first introduced WriteToLearn to EPATT´s middle school students. After seeing its success, she quickly ordered more subscriptions for the fourth through six graders. In fact, Weekes said students are forgoing playing educational games on the program´s laptops to work on their WriteToLearn summary and essay writing assignments.
"They just love WriteToLearn," said Weekes. "They´re kids, and they don´t want to do anything that´s not fun, and it´s fun."
WriteToLearn is available from Pearson Assessments, Pearson Digital Learning, Pearson Prentice Hall and Apple (as part of the Apple Digital Learning Series for middle and high school language arts). More information about WriteToLearn is available at www.WriteToLearn.net.
About Pearson Knowledge Technologies
Pearson Knowledge Technologies is the developer of products and services based on a unique automated text analysis technology that evaluates the meaning of whole passages. The company´s Knowledge Analysis Technologies (KAT) engine immediately measures writing and content in a way that simulates a skilled human grader and encourages better subject knowledge. Pearson Knowledge Technologies´ writing and reading skills products, such as WriteToLearn, Intelligent Essay Assessor and Summary Street, use the KAT engine to help improve writing, reading and comprehension skills as well as build content knowledge for education and other markets. For more information, visit www.PearsonKT.com
Pearson Knowledge Technologies is a business of Pearson Education, the world´s largest integrated education company, which in turn is part of Pearson (NYSE: PSO), the international media company. Pearson´s other primary operations include the Financial Times Group and the Penguin Group.