A reading tutor for every student, on demand!

Every educator knows that students benefit from extra reading practice, especially when it is combined with immediate feedback and support from a teacher. With Reading Assistant students receive individualized reading coaching every time they use the software, making the most of each instructional minute.

The online Reading Assistant program delivers:

Reading Assistant Tech and Learning Awards of Excellence
  • Help When Students Need It: Patented technology provides real-time corrective feedback via speech recognition, enabling students to self-correct as they are reading aloud
  • Time Savings for Teachers: Automatic calculation of words correct per minute (WCPM) and immediate access to comprehension and vocabulary reports make tracking students’ progress effortless
  • Increased Student Engagement: Reading selections for a variety of interests and reading levels, plus frequent comprehension checks, keep students motivated and focused on reading for meaning
  • Anytime, Anywhere Access: The Reading Assistant program on the MySciLEARNTM platform makes the software easy to implement for school or home use

Proven to Get Results

Students using the Reading Assistant program can improve their reading grade level up to 50% more than students receiving classroom instruction alone, in the same time period. Reading Assistant has been implemented in thousands of classrooms across the United States.

Unrivaled Real-Time Literacy Support

Reading Assistant is the only reading program that “listens” to students as they read out loud, intervenes when students falter, and automatically scores students’ oral reading. No other program or e-book provides comparable real-time guidance and feedback.

When a student has difficulty reading a word, Reading Assistant provides a visual cue. If the student does not self-correct, the software intervenes by pronouncing the word.

Reading Assistant Fluency Report

Students can see their own progress and monitor their own improvement on reading selections.


Engaging Content at a Variety of Levels

Reading Assistant Content Packs

  • More than 300 leveled reading selections aligned with Common Core State Standards, including science, history, and social studies
  • A range of reading levels to allow for differentiated instruction
  • A variety of genres supporting elementary to high school curriculum, including both literature and informational text at all reading levels

Visit www.readingassistant.com, a new website that provides educators with an array of resources focused on reading fluency and comprehension.

Students preview and read the text silently, including listening to a model reading. After answering guided reading questions, students read the text aloud and take a quiz.

Put Reading First

Students will:

  • Preview and read silently
  • Listen to a model reading of the text
  • Record their reading
  • Answer guided reading questions

The Reading Assistant program's reporting features help educators continuously monitor student progress, customize instruction, and motivate students.

Easy-to-Use Reports and Indicators

The MySciLEARNTM platform for Reading Assistant provides implementation and performance reporting at the district, group, and student level to support and improve data-driven decision making. Graphical depictions show usage, performance, reading level trends, and student proficiency levels.

Implementation Success Report

All versions of the Implementation Success Report, from district to student, show a high-level data summary, a usage trend graph, and a performance and reading level trend graph. The district, group and student versions of the report have additional graphs and/or tables beyond these basics.

At the top of the Implementation Success Reports is a data summary showing performance and usage indicators such as average Reading Level High Score (the highest reading level achieved balancing acceptable fluency and comprehension) and % Developing or Above (the percentage of reading selections for which WCPM is at least 75% of the established goal and for which the quiz score has been met or exceeded). On the student version of the report, this data summary may also include one or more red-flag alerts if there is a performance issue that needs to be addressed.

The Usage Trend graph plots the average number of completed selections against the average number of minutes of program use.

The Performance and Reading Level Trend graph charts the % of reading selections that are read at each performance level (proficient, developing, or emerging) against the average Reading Level High Score. The chart shown here is for an individual 6th grade student. The district version of the report shows aggregate data for all student participants in the district.

District View

Unique to the District Implementation Success Report, the Averages by School table aggregates usage and performance data at the school level, providing insight into implementation successes and challenges at individual sites.

Group View

The Group Performance view on the Group Implementation Success Report represents each student on a scatterplot graph according to their average reading level and their performance level. Proficient students are shown in green, Developing students are shown in blue, and Emerging students are shown in red. The larger the dot, the more students there are at the same point on the graph. When hovering over the dot, the viewer can see student names and details about their performance level.

The Averages by Student table shows high-level usage and performance data for individual learners. From this table, teachers can click on the microphone icon for any student to listen to audio recordings of the student reading, or click on a student name for more detailed information on student usage and performance. A red flag appearing next to a student name indicates that the student is struggling with comprehension or fluency and could benefit from intervention. 

Student View

The Time Usage Per Session graph on the Student Implementation Success Report shows the exact activity in each of the different reading selection steps of Preview and Read, Read & Record, and Take the Quiz. This view yields insights into where students may need to devote more time in order to improve performance.

The Achievement graph on the Student Implementation Success Report compares a student's average quiz score and average fluency score (Words Correct Per Minute). This view helps teachers monitor reading rate and see how well a student is deriving meaning from reading selections.

The Reading Selections table shows how a student has performed overall on each reading selection. If a student has made one or more audio recordings for a selection, the microphone icon will appear at the far left of the selection name. A status indicator just next to the selection name indicates whether a selection is in progress or complete. The table also shows grade equivalent, Lexile level, Think About it (TAI) score, Words Correct Per Minute (WCPM), and Quiz Score for each selection. Teachers can click on the selection name to read the text.

Reading Assistant Recording Details

Clicking through on the title of any reading selection reveals further detail including grade equivalent, Lexile®, WCPM goal, and more.

Comprehension Report

Reading Assistant Overall Comprehension Score

The Comprehension Report shows which types of comprehension questions students are struggling on, as well as those they have mastered. The report focuses on strategies, skills, and levels of thinking. Each of these three areas can be broken down further for more detail on the specific areas of strength and weakness.


Who should use Reading Assistant?

Reading Assistant is designed to be used by beginning readers, English language learners, and struggling readers who have attained basic word recognition and decoding skills and are now building their vocabulary, fluency and comprehension. This includes students as young as first grade, all the way up to adults.

Reading Assistant has solutions designed to implement with Response to Intervention programs for all student tiers.

How does Reading Assistant support vocabulary?

Increased print exposure has a direct relation to developing students’ vocabulary knowledge, because written text presents more words than readers can learn through oral language.  The added reading practice that students get with Reading Assistant contributes to a student’s overall print exposure and vocabulary knowledge in a number of ways:

  • Audible syllabification
  • A Glossary feature that removes the barrier of unfamiliar words by enabling readers to click on underlined words to hear the pronunciation and dictionary at the moment the word is encountered in a passage.  This approach has been shown to be one of the best ways of anchoring new vocabulary words in a student’s memory.
  • A Did You Know? feature that includes word background, Latin and Greek roots, other meanings or uses of words, cognates from Spanish and other languages, and fun facts to deepen vocabulary acquisition.
  • Passages from both informational text and literature that expose students to a broad range of vocabulary words at every reading level.
  • Picture representations for most words.
  • Spanish word translations.

How does Reading Assistant build fluency?

Reading fluency is the ability to decode words easily and accurately, recognize words with automaticity, and read aloud text with prosody. Instead of reading word by word, fluent readers focus their attention on the meaning and the message of the text. Reading Assistant builds fluency by providing the following:

  • Models: Each selection contains a fluent audio model.
  • Pronunciation support: The program intervenes with pronunciation if the student needs it.
  • Oral practice: Students read aloud each passage a minimum of two times.
  • Review: The program highlights words the student mispronounces during each oral reading.
  • Feedback: The program reports words correct per minute (WCPM), the standard measure of reading fluency.

How does Reading Assistant foster Reading Comprehension?

Multiple Reading Assistant features support the development of reading comprehension:

  • Think About It prompts and questions support students’ larger understanding and appreciation of what they read. They direct students’ attention to meaning, message, and vocabulary in the course of reading with reading strategies such as these: using prior knowledge, identifying a purpose, predicting, making connections, visualizing, monitoring and clarifying, retelling, summarizing, using context clues for meaning, and asking questions.
  • Quizzes after each selection that assess mastery of comprehension skills such as inferences; sequence; story events; theme; character traits; figurative language; important information; compare and contrast; author’s point of view; fact and opinion; diagrams, charts, graphs; cause and effect; and main idea.
  • Quiz questions that assess four levels of knowledge: literal, inferential, evaluative, and analytical.


Is Reading Assistant research-based?

Yes. According to the report of the National Reading Panel, "classroom practices that encourage repeated oral reading with feedback and guidance leads to meaningful improvements in reading expertise for students—for good readers as well as those who are experiencing difficulty." With Reading Assistant, the computer becomes the supportive listener that ensures all students can regularly practice oral reading while receiving immediate, individual feedback from Scientific Learning's advanced speech recognition software.

Is Reading Assistant research validated?

Yes. The impact of Reading Assistant on fluency growth was evaluated with mainstream students in Grades 2-5. Half of the classrooms in two schools used the software in thirty-minute sessions, once or twice a week over 17 weeks. Across all four grades, fluency gains were significantly greater for students who used the software than those who did not, averaging 43% (E.S.=0.91) greater than normative expectations over grades. Project sponsored by the Carlisle Foundation and NICHD.

What data are collected about the students’ work?

The MySciLEARNTM reporting engine includes detailed tracking of the student’s performance using Reading Assistant.


How often should students use Reading Assistant?

Our recommended schedule is:

K-3 – a minimum of 20 minutes 3 days per week

4-5 – a minimum of 30 minutes 3 days per week

6-8 - a minimum of 40 minutes 3 days per week

9-12 – a minimum of 40 minutes 3 days per week

Where did the guided reading selections come from?

Many of the Reading Assistant texts were originally published in one of the Carus™ family of magazines or by Lerner Publishing™. These Carus magazines include: Appleseeds™, Ladybug™, Spider™, Click!™, Cricket™, Odyssey™, Cobblestone™, Calliope™, and Faces™. Many of the guided reading selections were drawn from famous authors including Guy de Maupassant and O. Henry. Many more selections were written by great children’s authors.

How do students get placed in Reading Assistant?

The easiest placement option is to administer SLC’s Reading Progress Indicator. The RPI reading level will be used to place the student automatically at the appropriate content level.

If the school already established the student’s reading level, the teacher can use the reading level to place the student manually in the content.

MySciLEARN provides for assignments based on Guided Reading level (D through Z) , Grade level Equivalent and the Lexile Framework for Reading®

The teacher can also assign guided reading selections to the student based on content topics/interest.

How is Reading Assistant content structured?

Reading Assistant is structured to build knowledge and reading skills simultaneously. Each content pack is designed to cover topics that are relevant to the national content standards. Each content pack contains topics at a range of levels to meet the needs of readers who are below grade level as well as on grade level

Content PackK-34-56-89-12
Reading Level1-31-52-83-adult

Each topic within a content pack is designed to introduce vocabulary relevant to the topic standard and allow for multiple exposures to the new vocabulary in different contexts. Guided reading selections may provide background knowledge, extend the ideas of another selection, or present the one set of ideas in multiple contexts of viewpoints. Many of the guided reading selections focus on science, social studies, or literature standards for the content pack.

For example, in Content Pack 6-8,  the following guided reading selections explore a variety of relevant and important topics related to the subject of the Grand Canyon:


G4 Mid

The Grand CanyonEarth Science: Geography and geologyThese selections present history, geology, geography, and mathematics against the backdrop of the Grand Canyon’s vastness and beauty.


The Grand CanyonExpository NonfictionNonfiction; geology, beauty of Canyon


John Wesley Powell: American ExplorerBiographyBiography of J.W. Powell, 1st geologist to explore Canyon


John Powell's Grand CanyonJournalAuthentic journal excerpts from J. W. Powell


Grand Canyon MathNonfictionNonfiction, math: Understanding Canyon statistics

What genres are covered in Reading Assistant?

  • Predictable text
  • Realistic fiction
  • Historical fiction
  • Science fiction
  • Poetry
  • Folktale, myth, legend
  • Expository nonfiction
  • Biography
  • Play
  • Speech
  • Jokes
  • Short Story
  • Point-counterpoint
  • Personal Narrative
  • Journal; eye-witness account

Does the guided reading software support ELL students?

Reading Assistant supports the needs of English Language Learners in multiple ways, regardless of students’ first language. At the core of Reading Assistant is the speech recognition technology. It “listens” just like a teacher would. And it provides point-of-use coaching, just like a teacher would, when a student mispronounces or hesitates over a word.

Reading Assistant selections are structured to build knowledge through repeated exposure to vocabulary. Each topic builds knowledge and depth of vocabulary understanding. All selections include strong visuals that help develop mental models and English vocabulary.

To develop academic vocabulary, Reading Assistant contains more than 10,000 terms defined in depth in the Glossary. In addition, within each Glossary entry, the “Did You Know?” feature broadens word knowledge and use by providing Greek and Latin roots, other meanings and usages, fun facts, and Spanish cognates.

English Language Learners also benefit from using Reading Assistant when they carry out these actions:

  • Listen to a fluent reading model
  • View the Glossary for definitions and visual support for unfamiliar words
  • Read aloud, using advanced speech verification technology
  • Listen to their own recorded reading
  • Review mispronounced words
  • Hear word pronunciation by clicking on the word

Reading Assistant provides additional support for students whose first language is Spanish. When Spanish language support is activated, the Glossary contains an Español button that displays terms in Spanish and plays Spanish audio pronunciations. In this mode, the student also receives all program instructions in Spanish.

What Licensing options are offered?

We offer the following license options:

  • School Site On Premise Deployment: One license is purchased for each workstation and/or site. The Program is supported by a local area or wide area network hosted server.
  • Web-based Online Deployment:  Per Student and Site licenses available for a school site.

How do I raise funds to pay for Reading Assistant in my school or district?

There are a number of appropriate funding sources in every school and district including:

Title I funds; Special Education funds; 21st Century Community Learning Centers grants; English Language Acquisition funds (Title III, Part A); School Improvement grants; Striving Readers Comprehensive Literacy grants; Race to the Top grants; Investing in Innovation grants; school discretionary funds; professional development funds; curriculum funds for reading or English Language Arts; and afterschool funds

View our complete listing of appropriate funding sources.

Product Tour


Progress Example

Secondary student struggling to decode vocabulary.

Click the play button to start and the pause button to stop. Pause one Progress Demo before playing the other.

After Reading Assistant.

Click the play button to start and the pause button to stop. Pause one Progress Demo before playing the other.