AR or Accelerated Reader software is a practice program for reading that is used to monitor and assess the daily progress of students in practicing reading. Renaissance Learning, Inc created the original software that is sold in two versions. There is the Renaissance Place company web-based software for Accelerated Reader and the desktop version available in stores and online with other software products like Accelerated Math.
The Accelerated Reader program was designed to encourage children to regularly read books. By using the program, parents and teachers can test and evaluate the reading level of the reader and use the software to get measurable feedback on a child’s progress. The Accelerated Reader program has been widely use by schools as either part of their curriculum or a supplement for their primary and secondary students’ reading program.
The Accelerated Reader program has a selection of books that have already been evaluated, assigned points and have been labeled at a reading level depending on the difficulty level of the vocabulary, sentences and book’s length. Quizzes have also been prepared for books that have already been evaluated and rated.
Schools may purchase and file several kinds and copies of Accelerated Reader quizzes depending on their use. The prepared quizzes can be purchased from Renaissance or from authorized vendors who sell AR prepared quizzes. Booksellers and publishers usually bundle a book with the related AR quizzes and sell them. Some school librarians or subject coordinators buy as many copies of books in the library with AR prepared quizzes ready to be used as reference materials.
Before buying Accelerated Reader Software, do the following;
- Review the specific use, capability and benefits of the Accelerated Reader Software and what you can do with the designed program.
- If the purpose of the purchase is for school use, match the features of the reader software with your reading program or curriculum. Determine if the program will be useful as part of your main curriculum or will just serve as a supplement material for reading.
- Determine if all the measurable feedback and quizzes prepared will be used as part of your curriculum. Some schools have a policy that the Accelerated Reader individual tests are taken more than once and are included in the student’s assessment
- Decide on which version to purchase, the web-based format or the desktop version. Keep in mind that depending on the type and features, the price may differ.
- Search for authorized vendors like booksellers and publishers who sell bundles and packages either online or in store.
- Request for package prices from Renaissance Learning, Inc and from the authorized vendors. Ask that all-inclusive costs be provided, including the cost of upgrading the system.
- Find out if training can also be provided for the users.
- Compare the bundles and packages and the price quotes. Choose the package that fits your purpose and budget.
If the package is not so expensive, you might want to also consider purchasing a copy of the software to use at home as a supplemental reading practice program for your child in primary or secondary school.