Google said on Tuesday that its Read Along app, which was first launched in India as Bolo in 2018, has been found to improve reading abilities of children in the country.
In an assessment conducted by an independent partner comprising over 3,500 students in three languages and across five states in India, 40 per cent more students who used Read Along saw an improvement of one or more reading levels as compared to students not using the app, Google said.
The study, published by Sattva Consulting this month, revealed that while ‘Read Along’ helps in imparting reading fluency to learners, it also enables development of foundational competencies of Letter and word recognition.
The extent of this development depends on the level of engagement of the learner with the app, showed the results.
“Our internal analysis shows that after reading 100 mins on the app, beginner readers (those who read at a speed of less than 45 correct words per minute) see an improvement from 38 per cent to 88 per cent in their oral reading fluency,” Nikita Bharadia, Google’s Product Marketing Manager for Education wrote in a blog post.
The Read Along app is now available in over 180 countries and 10 languages. To date, over seven million students have cumulatively read more than 32 million stories on the platform.
To improve the reading experience, Google is now adding new features and more books to the platform.
Starting Tuesday, ‘Read Along’ offers more than 700 unique books across all languages, with a new look for the content library, Bharadia said.
“We are working on features to aid comprehension and give educators the ability to create student reading groups and track progress. We are also making Read Along more accessible in the landscape mode,” she said.