August 28, 2006 at 11:59 AM EDT
MY Access! 7.0 Helps Students Write the Next Chapter in Their Academic Careers

Vantage Learning

    Teachers around the country agree: The new features of MY Access!
7.0 help create better writers and put the power of account management
in the hands of school administrators, making it the most
comprehensive online writing tool on the market

Today Vantage Learning, the world's leading provider of online assessment and automated essay scoring tools, announced the release of MY Access! 7.0, the newest version of the company's innovative online instructional writing tool. The upgraded MY Access! 7.0 is available immediately and includes feature enhancements designed to make the program even easier to navigate and to use in a variety of instructional settings, and new programs to help students prepare for the SAT(R) and other standardized writing tests. MY Access! 7.0 also gives educators the most accurate picture of students' progress and offers additional ways to customize MY Access! to their students' reading and writing levels.

"MY Access! 7.0 lets users explore all of the program's unique functions in a cleaner, easier-to-use platform," says Harry Barfoot, Vice President of Vantage Learning. "In the age of 'No Child Left Behind' testing, it's more important than ever for students and teachers to have the best tools to improve their writing, and develop lifelong skills. For six years, MY Access! has helped build better writers through its innovative approach to online learning, and we're excited to continue that mission with version 7.0."

MY Access!'s Web-based writing environment uses Vantage Learning's IntelliMetric(TM) technology to instantly score student essays and provide immediate feedback that engages and motivates students. Students simply write an essay based on a teacher's assignment, then submit the essay to the MY Access! system. MY Access! instantly analyzes over 300 semantic, syntactic, and discourse characteristics, and scores students on focus and meaning, organization, content and development, language use and style, mechanics and conventions, and on their overall writing proficiency.

Version 7.0 incorporates a number of enhanced and new features, including:

-- Advanced MY Tutor(R) and MY Editor(R) functions to help students better understand how to improve their writing. Version 7.0 offers new readability levels so educators can select the appropriate reading and feedback levels on a student-by-student basis, whether they are below, at, or above grade level.

-- Improved navigation for both students and educators. Now students can easily access MY Tutor(R) and MY Editor(R) through individual buttons within their writing area, and educators can see graphic displays of students' progress on the main MY Access! menu page.

-- SAT Power Plus and Awesome Adjectives, two new functions to help students prepare for the SAT, ACT, and other college admissions testing. The Power Plus function encourages students to replace everyday words with specific words usually found on these tests. Awesome Adjectives, part of the Power Plus function, automatically prompts students with a set of more challenging words to create more colorful essays.

-- More professional development opportunities to support districts using MY Access!. Vantage Learning now offers one-, two-, or three-day workshops that focus on the connections between reading, writing, and real-time classroom coaching and mentoring.

-- An unlimited prompt library that gives educators infinite access to add and use writing prompts to enhance student learning experience, and customize writing instruction to district curriculum.

-- A new online Account Management System that helps schools and districts better manage their students' licenses, and lets them place and track orders over the Web. Now technology coordinators and administrators can directly import student rosters at the beginning of the school year, add new students throughout the year, and change the status of students who have moved to another district school or left the district entirely.

"MY Access! has had a phenomenal effect on our teachers and students," says Lila Bronson, Ed.D, Director of Special Projects and Technology for Rosemead School District in Rosemead, Calif. "Since we implemented MY Access!, I have witnessed first-hand the overall positive impact on our students, from improved test scores, to increased excitement about learning, to sheer motivation to write more often. And our teachers and parents remain enthusiastic about using this 21st century tool to help students achieve higher writing proficiency."

To interview Bronson, or for more information about MY Access!, please call Kathryn O'Connor at 610-642-8253, or write to Kathryn@GregoryFCA.com.

About Vantage Learning

With over 146 million online test transactions last year, Vantage Learning is the world's leading provider of online assessment and automated essay scoring. Recognized as the gold standard for scoring quality, consistency, reliability, and scalability, Vantage Learning's award-winning education tools meet the needs of educators and school administrators, businesses and government agencies that need a comprehensive Internet-based test authoring, delivery, scoring, and reporting platform. Vantage developed IntelliMetric(TM), which administers and scores responses to open-ended questions over the Internet using advanced artificial intelligence (AI) technology. Vantage Learning's MY Access!(R) instructional writing program won a Codie Award in 2006 for Best Instructional Program: English/Language Arts - Secondary, was a Codie Awards dual winner in 2005, and was a 2004 Award of Excellence winner from Technology and Learning Magazine. Eduventures selected Vantage Learning as one of the eight most innovative educational technology companies.

Vantage Learning provides services across a broad spectrum of clients. The College Board, ACT, and the Graduate Management Admission Council(R) (GMAC(R)), all utilize Vantage technologies for college readiness and admissions. Oregon, Mississippi, Texas, and Virginia leverage the Vantage Learning Platform(TM), the Student Progress Monitoring System(TM), and the Uniform Online Testing System(TM) for formative, summative, and computer adaptive assessments that drive instructional programs. Respected publishers like Hampton-Brown offer customized versions to support assessment linked to their proprietary content. School districts such as Los Angeles Unified School District, Red Clay DE, Milwaukee Public Schools, Newark Public Schools, and many other respected districts integrate MY Access! into their core language arts curriculum. Learn more at www.VantageLearning.com.

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