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Frequently Asked Questions

Readable English is a Research-proven, accelerated reading program that uses systematic phonics and phonemic awareness to exponentially increase fluency and comprehension. Students take ownership of their learning and quickly get to grade level reading and beyond!

How do schools implement the program?

Implementation can be individualized by school needs. Once teachers are trained, the program can be implemented with an entire class, in small groups and one-to-one. There are 4 phases of Readable English. Training for Phase 1 can be completed in 4-6 hours. A follow-up training for Phases 2 to 4 takes approximately 2 hours. The program is also suitable for both online and in-person instruction. Ideally, classes should be taught 5 days a week for 30-45 minutes a day. You can read more about school implementation here.

What evidence do you have on the effectiveness of Readable English?

You can read a peer-reviewed research paper on the effectiveness of Readable English here. We have relationships with major universities to continue publishing findings in peer reviewed journals. We also collect standardized school testing data to show before and after results which you can view on our Research Results page. On average, students learning Readable English improve at twice the rate of students in control groups, for both reading accuracy and comprehension. Typically, these results can be seen as early as Phase 1 as this is where students develop phonemic awareness, phonics and orthographic mapping.

Will students develop a dependency on the glyphs?

Readable English is designed so that students and teachers remove the glyphs as they master the words and sounds, in the way you would remove training wheels from a bicycle. Few children ever become dependent on training wheels. In the research studies that have been conducted, we’ve found that students actually simply ignore the glyphs for words that have been committed to memory as sight words.

Does learning the glyphs increase the cognitive load for students?

Readable English does not load the brain with another layer, in fact, it removes the need for students to learn all the current phonetic/language conventional rules and exceptions – the existing layer where the real cognitive load sits. In this way, Readable English lightens the cognitive load, making heavy load language rule and exception lessons redundant. This is why Professor John Sweller (the ‘father’ of the Cognitive Load Theory) is a public advocate of Readable English.

Will Readable English conflict with my current methods?

Readable English is not a substitute for the good practices that teachers implement, such as structured synthetic phonics programs. However, where other phonics programs fail to address “tricky words” such as ‘who’, ‘though’ and ‘yacht’, Readable English builds a pronunciation guide right into the word eliminating the need for memorization. We’ve found that the addition of the markup does not conflict with most phonics-based approaches, in that the spelling is kept intact and it simply provides an extra visual cue that aligns with the rules students already know.

Many phonics programs denote the difference between sounds using italics or underlines, for example, a regular ‘oo’ for ‘boot’ and ‘th’ for ‘thumb’ and an underlined or italicized ‘oo’ for ‘book’ and ‘th’ for ‘them’. Readable English goes a step further by adding diacritical marks called ‘glyphs’ to ANY letters that do not make their standard sound, such as in ‘blood’ and ‘brooch’.


Isn't English fairly phonetic, are the glyphs really needed?

While to a proficient reader English may seem fairly phonetic, in reality, it is very complex. In just the 1,000 most common words, approximately:

  • Only 38% are truly phonetic, meaning they can be sounded out with standard letter and digraph sounds. These include words like ‘can’, ‘list’, and ‘long’.
  • 35% follow one of 45 phonetic rules. Some of the basic rules include the ‘final e’ rule in words like ‘time’ and make’ and the 2 vowels go walking rule in words like ‘speak’ and ‘sail’.
  • 27% are exceptions to rules or simply need to be memorized. Exceptions to rules include words like ‘have’, ‘gone’, ‘break’ and ‘said’. And words that simply need to be memorized include words like ‘one’, ‘who’ and ‘ocean’’.

For learners, all this overloads their cognitive capacity. You can read more about how complex the English language is in our free ebook download here.

Which students would benefit from the program?

The program is ideal for struggling readers, Special Education students, and Multilingual Learners. However, all students in grades 2-12 can benefit from being able to access content at their own grade level and above.

How can I register to start using Readable English?

Schedule a consultation to further explore if Readable English is right for your students and school. To purchase Readable English for tutoring or homeschooling use, go to Order Now.

Can Readable English be taught completely online?

Yes. The Readable English online platform allows teachers to teach in-person or online with pre-made lesson presentations that need no prep time. With the share screen function, and interactive games and videos, the presentation slides keep the program highly engaging and effective. Since all lessons work in either setting, teachers do not miss a session of reading if students are at home. Because of this flexibility, the scenarios can vary by need. Teachers can use the online platform to teach large groups, small groups, or one-to-one. Teachers who have been teaching online are reporting that their students are making as much progress as in-person classes.

Once a student has learned the glyphs, what support materials are available in Readable English?

A core component of the Readable English program is the ability for teachers to convert any texts or classroom materials into Readable English. The conversion tools on the learning portal enable teachers to instantly convert text or upload whole documents to be converted. You can watch a video about this on YouTube. We also provide a number of reading practice materials through the learning portal, such as the Reading Practice Module.