SOURCE: MetaMetrics, Inc.

MetaMetrics, Inc.

June 10, 2009 06:00 ET

MetaMetrics Launches New "Find a Book" Web Site

Free Book Search Allows Users to Build Custom Reading Lists Based on Ability and Interests

DURHAM, NC--(Marketwire - June 10, 2009) - MetaMetrics®, Inc., developer of the widely adopted Lexile Framework® for Reading, today announced that it has launched an enhanced version of its popular "Find a Book" Web site. The free online book search allows users to explore the Lexile® Book Database and build custom reading lists based on their Lexile level (reading ability) and favorite subjects. The Lexile Book Database comprises more than 115,000 fiction and nonfiction titles, and the number of books with Lexile measures increases every day.

The "Find a Book" Web site is based, in part, on the research of James Sangil Kim, Ed.D., assistant professor of education at Harvard University. Dr. Kim's studies on summer "loss" or "slide," when many students' reading skills diminish over the summer months away from school, suggests that students who read a minimum of eight high-interest books at their Lexile level over the summer can achieve similar gains in reading growth as students who attended summer school.

School districts and public libraries already are using the freely available "Find a Book" site to engage students in reading this summer. In North Carolina, for example, there is a state-wide summer reading initiative that encourages students and their parents to use the new book search, along with students' Lexile measures from the state's year-end tests, to select leisure-reading materials at their local public library that can help students retain and further develop their literacy skills.

According to Mary Gray Leonard, director of media services for Durham (N.C.) Public Schools, the district's Web site (dpsnc.net/READ/resources.html) recommends that students and parents use "Find a Book" to support summer reading. "The 'Find a Book' Web site is a valuable tool for helping students locate books that are not only at their appropriate reading level, but also books that are interesting to them. The ability to locate books in this manner is an important component in motivating students to read more, take ownership of their education and become lifelong readers."

The new "Find a Book" Web site provides all of the familiar features and resources as the previous version. These include links to WorldCat, a collection of library holdings that allows users to check a book's availability at their local public library, and the Barnes & Noble Web site (www.bn.com), where users can purchase the book. The new site builds on these and other popular features by adding the following enhancements:

--  Quick book search on every page that allows users to enter a title,
    author or keyword and instantly find relevant books.
--  Additional subject categories and subcategories that help users to
    find books on topics of interest.
--  Improved search results information that users have identified as
    being most helpful in selecting a book: the Lexile measure, book jacket and
    summary, and page count.
--  Advanced filtering options that allow users to refine their book
    search results by modifying the Lexile and/or age levels. For example,
    users with a Lexile measure that is lower than the average reader their age
    can filter their book search results to identify high-interest, low-level
    titles on topics that are more developmentally appropriate for their
    reading ability and age group.
--  More export options that allow users to print, email or save their
    book lists as Microsoft Word or Excel documents. Users also can select
    which book data to export, including the summary, subject category and page
    count.
    

"With nearly all states facing budget shortfalls this year, it is imperative that we continue to provide educators and families with freely available resources that can help to promote student learning, particularly over the summer months when too many students go home to 'text-free' environments," said MetaMetrics President Malbert Smith III, Ph.D. "We applaud North Carolina -- and all other states, school districts and public libraries -- that have made 'Find a Book' part of their reading programs. Together, we can better enable all students to find both educational and leisure-time materials that can help them to retain and grow the literacy skills they work so hard to develop during the school year."

Recognized as the most widely adopted reading measure, Lexile measures are used at the school level in various capacities in all 50 states. Each year, more than 28 million Lexile measures are reported from reading assessments and programs, representing about half of U.S. students.

The Lexile Framework is an educational tool that connects readers with reading materials using a common measure called a Lexile. What makes the Lexile Framework unique, and what has led to its widespread adoption, is that it measures both reading ability and text difficulty on the same developmental scale. When used together, Lexile reader measures and Lexile text measures allow educators, parents and students to find books and other materials that meet and challenge a reader's ability and interests or school assignments.

For more information on the Lexile Framework and to search for titles using the new "Find a Book" Web site, visit www.Lexile.com. To learn more about integrating "Find a Book" into your reading programs, contact Chris Vitiello at 919-547-3457 or cvitiello@Lexile.com.

About MetaMetrics Inc.

MetaMetrics Inc., a privately held educational measurement company, develops scientifically based measures of student achievement that link assessment with instruction, foster better educational practices and improve learning by matching students with materials that meet and challenge their abilities. The company's team of psychometricians developed the widely adopted Lexile Framework for Reading (www.Lexile.com); El Sistema Lexile para Leer, the Spanish-language version of the Lexile Framework; The Quantile Framework® for Mathematics (www.Quantiles.com); and The Lexile Framework for Writing. In addition to licensing Lexile and Quantile® measures to state departments of education, testing and instructional companies and publishers, MetaMetrics delivers professional development, resource measurement and customized consulting services. For more information, visit www.MetaMetricsInc.com.

MetaMetrics®, the MetaMetrics logo and tagline, Lexile®, Lexile Framework®, Lexile Analyzer®, the Lexile logo, Quantile®, Quantile Framework® and the Quantile logo are trademarks of MetaMetrics, Inc., and are registered in the United States and abroad. The trademarks and names of other companies and products mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners. Copyright © 2009 MetaMetrics, Inc. All rights reserved.

Contact Information

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    MetaMetrics:
    Eric Zurowski
    919-547-3453
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