When you log into your teacher account for the very first time, our site will walk you through the necessary steps to create accounts on your students’ behalves. All you’ll need to do is enter their first and last names, or their initials if you feel more comfortable keeping their names private.
After you’ve created your first batch of student usernames, you can create more accounts at any time by clicking the "Add New Class" icon or the light grey "Add Students" button while viewing an established class roster.
There is no limit as to how many class rosters a teacher account can set up, and there’s no limit as to how many students can be on each roster. However, for practical and aesthetic reasons, you may find it useful to keep the number of students per roster under 35, and the number of rosters per teacher account under 10.
On ReadTheory, reading levels are never assigned manually. All students logging in for the first time will need to take our placement pretest, which starts on a third grade level by default. If that material is too difficult, the pretest will immediately adjust to show first and second grade material instead. Similarly, if it's too easy, the pretest will progressively move up to grades four, five, and beyond.
All students will be moving within a range of levels at all times so that they will be continually challenged. This provides for maximum differentiation and individualized learning. Our site is fully interactive and responsive, so students will only ever see content based on their previous performance.
On ReadTheory, individual passages are never assigned manually. After our placement pretest, students will be placed at a level, and our program will draw a passage at random from within that level for the student.
Each time a student passes a full quiz (scores between 70% and 89%), the student remains at the same level. If the student fails the quiz (scores 69% or less), then the quiz is replaced into the pool of available quizzes and the student's level decreases. If the student performs outstandingly on the quiz (scores 90% or more), the student's level increases. In each case, a new quiz will be randomly drawn from the appropriate pool of available quizzes at the student’s level.
Student and teacher accounts are equipped with different functions, and accounts cannot flip back and forth between these functions. You are currently accessing ReadTheory from your teacher account, which is unequipped to access our quizzes. Teacher accounts only provide administrative and statistical oversight for student accounts.
If you would like to test-drive the site from the perspective of a student, we suggest that you create a student account for yourself. From there, you'll be able to see our reading materials.
We completed a preliminary research study in March 2016 documenting the feedback of 1,100 teachers who used our program in 2015. Review our preliminary study results to learn how ReadTheory improves test scores, grades, and confidence. Two neutral third parties are also conducting research of their own concerning the effectiveness of our program. We know that this information is important to teachers and schools that wish to formally integrate our program into their curricula, especially for RTI, and plan to continue such research moving forward as our program becomes more widespread. When each new study that becomes available, we'll make a new, prominent posting on our site.
We are proud of the fact that ReadTheory is free and available to all. There are no licensing fees involved in using ReadTheory.
ReadTheory LLC is a small, independent business. We sustain our free site, ReadTheory.org, through a combination of advertising and the sale of print materials at our sister site, ReadTheoryWorkbooks.com. If you are interested in obtaining high-quality print versions of our passages, all of our workbooks are reasonably priced at just $0.99 (USD) per book, with discounts for those who buy in bulk. Rest assured, however, that there is no pressure to buy workbooks in order to gain access to the interactive site, ReadTheory.org.
ReadTheory is completely free of charge for an unlimited number of students per school. Putting any kind of paywall on the site is not part of our plans. We are currently able to support ourselves through the means outlined above, and hope to continue doing so for the foreseeable future.
Because displaying ads is a crucial part of how we are able to sustain ourselves, we kindly request that you disable any ad-blocking browser plugins you may be using while visiting our site. Thank you for your understanding.
All logins proceed through www.ReadTheory.org/auth/login (this URL will not work if you are currently logged in!). To log in, students should enter their usernames in the Username box and your class code in the Password / Class Code box. All of your students will share the same class code unless they set a new password on their settings page.
Usernames for student accounts usually follow the formula First Name + Last Initial + Number (if needed for uniqueness). For example, a student named Jane Doe might log in using the username JaneD999. She won’t be able to log in properly if she tries entering "Doe, Jane" or her email address in the Username box.
To set a new class code, log in to your teacher account. Navigate to the Class Code page. Then follow the instructions on that page.
This error message appears when users accidentally access our Sign Up page instead of our Login page. Our login page is located at ReadTheory.org/auth/login (this URL will not work if you are currently logged in!).
Because student accounts ultimately belong to students themselves (and the parents/guardians of students age 13 and under), students are authorized to edit their login settings. This means your student may replace your class code with a password of his or her own choosing. If this replacement was done by mistake, it can be remedied by clicking the "Refresh Class Code" button on the Class Code page (visible when logged in as a teacher). This will reset your students' passwords back to your class code. But be advised that this method only works if the student in question is listed as a "Current Student" in at least one of your ReadTheory classes. If this is not the case, you'll have to invite this student to rejoin one of your classes (and your invitation will have to be accepted) before you can proceed to refresh his or her class code. To send your student an invitation to join your class, navigate to the Class Overview page (visible when logged in as a teacher) and click the "Add Students" button. Then select the "Invite Existing Students" radio button on the resulting page and proceed accordingly.
Whenever a teacher account sets up a student account, the student accounts will automatically be set to the teacher account’s email address. A student who uses the "I forgot" functions will generate an email that should land in the teacher’s inbox.
The easiest way to resolve this situation is for the student not to contact us, but you, the teacher. As a teacher, you have the ability to look up and/or reset your students’ login credentials at any time.
Sometimes, users who use our "forgot my password/username" button report finding our messages in their spam folders. Please don’t forget to check your spam folder if you do not receive an automatically generated message from us right away.
Furthermore, some school districts’ email servers prevent users from receiving automatically generated messages and/or messages from unknown senders. When this happens, the email bounces back to us immediately and it will never make it to your inbox or your spam filter at all. We have no way of working around these security filters, so please inquire with your school’s or district’s IT personnel if you suspect that your incoming mail is being filtered.
You can always contact us at support@ReadTheory.org if you are not receiving our automatically generated password or username reminder emails for any reason. A real, live human will respond to your message within one business day.
This is a security feature. This occurs when our site logs users out after a certain time period of what seems like inactivity. We do not put time pressure on our users because we want them to be able to digest our passages to the fullest extent possible, but sometimes this means that users' log-in sessions time out while they are still reading. If this happens to your students, they can simply log back in to pick up where they left off. As long as your students were working on our full-length multiple choice quizzes (i.e., NOT the placement pretest or an essay question), their progress will be saved.
Again, this occurs when our site logs users out after a certain time period of what seems like inactivity. For security reasons, our site automatically logs users out after several minutes of what seems like inactivity. The vast majority of students are able to complete the pretest quiz as well as most full-length quizzes before this security measure affects them. We encourage students to complete the pretest without taking any breaks, as their progress can be lost in this way.
All users sharing one device must log out in order for other users to log in. Please remember to click your username followed by Logout in the upper right-hand corner of the page any time you wish to log out of the site. If you do not log out manually, other users who share your computer, phone, or tablet may be able to access your account without your consent.
There are as many different ways to add or remove saved login credentials as there are browsers. We recommend that you search the web for the name of your web browser plus the phrase "forget saved password," or use your browser’s Help and/or Settings functions. We are unable to provide instructions for every version of every browser that is compatible with our site.
If you are unable to find instructions for removing saved password information in your browser, one temporary solution is to simply use another browser instead.
Once you have finished creating your first class list, you can click the "Add New Class" button. This is the dark grey icon at the top of the page that looks like a plus sign. From here, our site will direct you through the steps required to create a new class list. You can do this as often as needed.
Scroll down to the bottom of your "My Classes" page until you see a list of your students' real names and usernames. Their real names are all links, displayed as blue text. If you click on the student's name, you will be provided the option to edit her name.
If the student needs to change her username as well, she can do this by logging in and clicking Account followed by Settings in the upper right-hand corner of the page. The Account Settings page will give her the option to change her username. Alternatively, since you already know the student's current username and default password, you could log in on her behalf and make this change for her.
If your class was accidentally deleted, you will have to recompile it manually. This is tedious, but not difficult.
While you are logged in to your teacher account, click the dark grey plus sign icon at the top of the page to add a new class. Instead of creating new student accounts for this class, you have the option to import existing student accounts. If you know the usernames of the students to be monitored, you can simply input those usernames, and they will be invited to join the new class.
The students will need to confirm their addition to the new class the next time they log in. They can do this by pressing the blue "new class" notification at the top of the page once logged in. Students will not lose any progress, and the teacher account will be able to see the students' previous progress as well as all new activity. Their passwords should also still be set to whatever default you had before the list was deleted.
If you do not have access to your students' old usernames at this time, you can send us an email at support@ReadTheory.org with a list of their real first and last names, and we can look the usernames up for you.
Because student accounts ultimately belong to the students themselves (and the parents/guardians of said students), we allow them to edit their login information and drop/add classes. We know that this can lead to situations where students either accidentally or deliberately disrupt their classes by removing themselves from their classes. However, if a teacher notices that this has occurred, it is up to him or her to discuss the situation with the student in a way that he or she deems appropriate.
This situation is always reversible. While you are logged in to your teacher account, navigate to the class page that's relevant for the student in question. Near the middle of the page, there's a grey "Add Students" button. When you click this, you have the option to import existing student accounts. If you know the usernames of the students you wish to monitor, you can simply input those usernames, and they will be invited to join your class.
Students re-invited in this way will need to confirm their addition to the class the next time they log in. They can do this by pressing the blue "new class" notification at the top of the page once logged in. Students will not lose any progress, and the teacher account will be able to see the students' previous progress as well as all new activity.
Because student accounts ultimately belong to the students themselves, we allow them to edit their information and drop/add classes. We know that this can lead to situations where students either accidentally or deliberately disrupt their classes by changing their usernames and passwords. However, if a teacher notices that this has occurred, it is up to him or her to discuss the situation with the student in a way that he or she deems appropriate.
Furthermore, these situations are always reversible. Teachers can direct students to change their usernames back to their original states, or teachers can log into student accounts and make these changes themselves. If you ever need further assistance in carrying out any of these actions, please contact us.
Near the top of the roster on your My Classes page, there is a small drop-down menu. This menu will allow you to toggle through your various classes.
If this menu is empty but you are certain that you have created more than one class list, your other list may actually be on an alternate teacher account that you aren’t currently viewing. Please contact us for more information.
You can use the pencil icon from within your teacher account's view to toggle essay questions on or off for your students. Click the OFF/ON button to toggle student written responses off or on.
Your students do not need second accounts, because teachers can share or transfer teacher accounts from roster to roster.
The other teacher can start a teacher account of their own. While the second teacher is logged in to their teacher account, they click the light grey "Add Students" button while viewing the relevant class roster. Instead of creating new student accounts for this class, they have the option to import existing student accounts. If your colleague knows the usernames of the students to be monitored, they can simply input those usernames, and those students will be invited to join the second class.
The students will need to confirm their addition to the new class the next time they log in. They can do this by pressing the blue "new class" notification at the top of the page once they are logged in. Students will not lose any progress, and both teacher accounts will be able to see the students' previous progress as well as all new activity.
Your students do not need second accounts, because teachers can share or transfer teacher accounts from roster to roster.
The other teacher can start a teacher account of their own. While the second teacher is logged in to their teacher account, they click the dark grey "New Class" icon at the top of the page, which is a dark grey icon that looks like a plus sign. Instead of creating new student accounts for this class, they have the option to import existing student accounts. If your colleague knows the usernames of the students to be monitored, they can simply input those usernames, and those students will be invited to join the new class.
The students will need to confirm their addition to the new class the next time they log in. They can do this by pressing the blue "new class" notification at the top of the page once they are logged in. Students will not lose any progress, and both teacher accounts will be able to see the students' previous progress as well as all new activity. Once all students have successfully migrated to other lists, you can delete the original roster without affecting your students’ accounts.
Our teachers use ReadTheory in a number of different ways. Because students' needs and goals can be so varied and individualized, we think teachers are the best judges of how to introduce ReadTheory into their classes and do not endorse any single, specific approach. Here are some suggestions for you to choose or modify as you see fit...
- Use our placement pretest as a benchmark to set improvement goals on an individual basis, or for a collaborative class-average goal. ReadTheory makes it easy to track your students' grade and Lexile progress over time.
- Set a benchmark number of quizzes that you expect students to pass every week (month, etc.). You may find it helpful to count only quizzes within a certain range of grade levels, rather than accepting all quizzes towards this goal.
- Log into ReadTheory as an in-class activity for a certain amount of time per week, perhaps as a participation grade. Note that the amount of time and effort needed to complete a quiz depends on many factors, including each student's reading abilities, the length and difficulty of the passages presented, and the number of questions accompanying each passage.
Note: The only approach we do NOT recommend is using only raw quiz scores to influence students' overall grades. We do not provide averages of students' correct answers on all quizzes. This would mix percentages from across multiple grade levels. For instance, if a student scores 90% on a grade 5 quiz, s/he will then be leveled up and presented with a grade 6 quiz. On that grade 6 quiz, she may then only score a 70%. This yields an average score of 80%, but this does NOT reflect the increased difficulty of the higher-level quiz. That average is unweighted for difficulty.
A student's progress report begins reflecting data once the student has completed the placement pretest and at least one full-length quiz on top of that. If your student has not yet begun completing any full-length quizzes, this explains the absence of data. The progress report will automatically update once he or she completes a full quiz.
You can share student progress in a number of ways. The easiest way is to make sure that parents know their children’s usernames and passwords. If parents have access to this information, they can log into the student’s account and check the student’s progress report at home.
Alternatively, you can print your students’ individual progress reports from within your teacher account and send these reports home.
On our graphs, dotted lines represent averages. For instance, if four students in your class finished the placement pretest at an 8th grade level and four students finished at a 6th grade level, the dotted line on the Pretest Grade Level Performance graph will run horizontally at y = 7, because the average performance in your class was at a 7th grade level.
Yellow diamonds represent a student’s static, unchangeable performance on the placement pretest relative to his or her performance on our full-length quizzes. This is to help you gauge whether your students are improving over time.
For instance, if a student completed the placement pretest at a 5th grade level but consistently works at a 6th grade level on our full-length quizzes, the yellow diamond will appear below the top of student’s bar on the Posttest Grade Level Performance graph. The top of the bar will be at y=6, while the diamond will be at y=5. The difference represents the student’s progress.
There is no single "post-test" assignment on ReadTheory. We use the term "post-test" to refer to all full-length quizzes completed after the initial placement pretest.
In the top-right corner of the Mastery of ELA Common Core State Standards Graph," there is a link to learn more about these standards. If you click on the "learn more" link, a new window will open with detail descriptions of our question types.
Official information is also available at corestandards.org/ELA-Literacy/
At the top of your whole-class and individual students’ progress reports, there are two input boxes labeled "Begin Date" and "End Date." If you click on these boxes, a calendar will appear. You can use this calendar to specify a date range for your progress report’s view.
In general, our levels are meant to roughly approximate US elementary, middle, and high school grade levels (1-12). These generally cover students ages 6 to 18.
Lexile scores are a measure of text complexity. We contract with MetaMetrics, the inventors of the Lexile framework, to compute the Lexile values for each passage. There is a range of acceptable Lexile scores that can be appropriate for students in each grade level. For our mapping of Lexile scores onto grade levels, we follow a mix of the 25th to 75th percentile scores from the Text Demand Study 2009 and the 2012 CCSS Text Measures. There is some overlap between the grade levels on this scale.
Our points are solely motivational in nature. Unlike grade and Lexile levels, they do not reflect any deeper pedagogical meaning.
Our titles are solely motivational in nature. Titles are a reflection of the points a student has earned on ReadTheory. To view titles images and point ranges, view an individual student progress report. Then click on the student title displayed on that page.
After the pretest, students will be placed at a level, and our program will draw a passage at random from within that level for the student. Each time a student passes a full quiz (scores between 70% and 89%), the student remains at the same level. If the student fails the quiz (scores 69% or less), then the quiz is replaced into the pool of available quizzes and the student's level decreases. If the student performs outstandingly on the quiz (scores 90% or more), the student's level increases.
All students will be moving within a range of grade levels (and corresponding Lexile levels) at all times so that they will be continually challenged. This provides for maximum differentiation and individualized learning. Our site is fully interactive and responsive, so students will only ever see content based on their previous performance.
Yes, you can reset student progress by clicking the "Reset Progress" button found on the class overview page and/or student progress report page while logged in as a teacher. Resetting the progress for this student will result in the loss of ALL his or her quiz data except for points earned, which will remain intact. When this student begins taking quizzes after reset, her or she will be prompted to retake the pretest and continue forward as if entering our program for the first time. This is helpful because it allows teachers to remedy false starts or slumps without invoking any points penalty. Maybe a student had skewed pretest, took a string of quizzes without putting in proper effort, or simply needs a fresh start. In any case, you can easily prompt the student to begin anew. You can also use this feature to re-enroll students for the new year without having to recreate their accounts or reset their points to zero.
If a student is being asked to repeat the placement pretest, this is generally for one of three reasons.
First, if the students took a break while completing the pretest, this would account for the situation. Our pretest must be completed in one sitting, or else the data will be lost.
If you are certain that the students did complete the pretest in its entirety, we ask that you double-check to ensure that they are using precisely the same usernames that appear on your roster. Sometimes students open alternate accounts so that they appear to be working in class, but their progress is not visible to the teacher. This is a very common issue, and sometimes the alternates can be as subtle as an extra space (username Jane S instead of JaneS) or a changed number (JaneS63 instead of JaneS64).
Finally, we always have sample questions on the homepage so that curious new users can see what the site is like before they sign up. Sometimes users who already have accounts get confused and think that they can complete the pretest through these previews, without logging in. We unfortunately can't recover data from these preview questions. We can only save data from accounts that are logged in.
If a passage is too hard, the student will be presented with easier material once he or she receives a low score (under 70%) on the present quiz.
Students’ levels do not always increase when they pass a quiz. They must excel on a quiz (score over 90%) in order to move up a level.
There are certain ranges of Lexile scores that are appropriate for each grade level. Some of these ranges overlap. More information can be found on the Lexile-to-Grade Correspondence page.
If a user does not pass a quiz (scores under 70%), the quiz is placed back into the pool of quizzes that could be randomly assigned to the student in the future. Only passed quizzes are removed from this pool. By repeating a failed quiz, the user has a second chance to gain points on that quiz, and it helps the user to build up the content knowledge that he or she may have lacked the first time around. The quiz will not reappear immediately. Because passage assignment is random within each reading level, it may be several days or weeks before the quiz returns, but it always remains a possibility.
The reset feature can be accessed in the following two ways.
Whole Class Reset: This option is now available directly on your My Classes page. Simply log into your teacher account, and you should be able to see a light grey "Reset Progress" option at the top of each of your rosters. Using this button will reset progress for all students on the roster you are currently viewing. You will be prompted to confirm this choice before proceeding.
Individual Student Reset: Log into your teacher account and navigate to your Progress Reports page by clicking the dark grey icon at the top of the page that looks like a graph. At first, you'll be brought to your whole-class progress report. Near the top, you'll find a drop-down menu where you can select an individual student report instead. Use this menu to choose the student whose data you wish to reset. Once that student's data is shown, there is a grey "Reset Progress" button near the top of the report. When you click this button, the site will prompt you to confirm your choice. Once you've done so, the student's progress will be erased and he or she can begin again from the pretest. Other students' accounts will remain unaffected.
Each student receives knowledge points (KP) for learning and making progress in our program. Knowledge points are used throughout our program and have three primary purposes:
1) To motivate students to read, write, and learn more
2) To communicate a general indication of progress
3) To encourage best effort and to discourage careless click-through
Students can earn knowledge points in the following ways:
Answer a regular question correctly: 1KP
Answer a challenge question correctly: 2KP (+1KP for regular question)
Pass a quiz: 15KP awarded
Get a perfect score on a quiz: 30KP awarded
Complete a written response on a quiz: 1-25KP awarded by teacher
*All point values may be subject to change as we strive to improve our program.
Unfortunately, knowledge points do not have any redeemable value in the real world; they cannot be traded in for any physical reward like a medal or badge. They can, however, be used to facilitate in class competitions in which teachers may reward students real world items at their own discretion.
Like most websites, ReadTheory is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, in every country in every time zone in the world. The ReadTheory Team, on the other hand, is a small group of hardworking individuals in two different time zones who would be glad to answer your questions and concerns by email at support@ReadTheory.org.
If you would like to delete your account, please contact us at support@ReadTheory.org with your name, email address, and the username of the account(s) you would like to close.
Student accounts may be suspended due to suspicious or improper use of our program. This may result from careless quiz clickthrough, exceedingly poor performance, or otherwise gaming our system. We reserve the right to take action to suspend a student's account in an effort to discontinue such activity, as it adversely affects the experience of our program for other users.
Our ads come to us from a third-party aggregator. We diligently maintain a blacklist of any advertisers that are not appropriate for children so that these companies will not appear on our site. If you or your students ever encounter an ad that you find inappropriate, please report it to us at support@ReadTheory.org along with the URL (web address) of the advertiser in question so that we can add it to our blacklist immediately.
Please note that we need the exact URL of the advertiser in order to block it. We regret that we cannot block advertisers based on keywords or categories alone.
The only two ways we are able to sustain ReadTheory financially are through the sale of our official workbooks and the viewing of ads on our site. When our materials are reproduced unlawfully, this undermines our ability to keep the site free and open for all.
Every week, we make one passage per grade level available to download on our Printables page. We also sell high-quality printable workbooks at our online store. These are the only two authorized ways to access our content offline.
You can send us an email at support@ReadTheory.org. We strive to respond to all actionable emails within one business day.