The educational landscape has changed dramatically since the start of the pandemic. This affected both teachers and students and even their educational needs. With this, we witnessed the birth of various innovative educational tools, including Reading Progress. Now, Microsoft plans to take learning to a higher level with the introduction of Reading Coach.
“We’re excited to share that Reading Coach will come built into Immersive Reader, our free reading tool that supports equitable education,” wrote Paige Johnson, Microsoft Education Vice President, in a Microsoft Education Blog post. “Now, students at every level can access quality, individualized reading fluency coaching across Microsoft 365 apps. Embedding Reading Coach into Immersive Reader also provides students with features like Microsoft Translator that offer real-time assistance designed to help all students, including English language learners and students with special educational needs, better understand concepts and text.”
According to Johnson, Reading Coach is designed to complement Reading Progress in helping teachers focus on more significant tasks. It will work as a reading practice tool for students, which automatically generates individualized exercises depending on the unique needs of each student. During the reading process, the Reading Coach will identify the words the reader is struggling with and create “additional opportunities for practice.” Moreover, Johnson noted that the new tool will offer visuals for vocabulary recall and guidance on the correct pronunciation and syllabification.
To improve the current situation of students with instant solutions, on the other hand, Microsoft introduced new updates in Reading Progress. In this update, Reading Progress won’t just measure and identify correct words per minute, accuracy rates, and challenging words: it will also automatically detect prosody, the patterns of rhythm and sound in a language. Add to that, Reading Progress also now supports more than 100 languages and will let the educator give more insights to students by easily identifying the challenging phonics rules for them.