Pearson – text analyzer

The Pearson text analyzer seems to be another tool based on finding reading texts for students based only on vocabulary.  It is not going to predict the level of what a student has produced. There will be a level or two between what students can read and produce.  A B2 reading text is probably something a C1 or C2 student could produce. The text analyzer’s main function seems to be finding appropriate text for a student to read and then highlight which vocabulary is too high for them.  Unfortunately, it seems to do so with a small error margin.

I put 27 sentences, which is the maximum to get under 500 words, into Pearson’s text analyzer.  Every sentence contains C2 grammar.  It predicted that the text is GSE level: 66 – 70 or  CEFR level: B2+.  It also offered the following information (I coloured it):

Vocabulary above the level of your text

  • drawn

  • confirmed

  • telling

  • expected

  • tracking

  • uninhabited

  • barefoot

  • polo

  • trump

  • neutrality

  • credentials

  • woolly

  • wants

  • buckle

  • sovereignty

  • quarterback

  • naive

Other readability measures

ARI  9.8 – Coleman Liau  10.1 – Flesch Kincaid  9.1 – FOG  12.4 – SMOG  11.9

*there is no explanation of what these readability scores mean on the page, but with the help of google:

The automated readability index (ARI) 9.8 is what an English Native 15-year-old can read. 14 is the highest for ‘professors’.  Coleman Liau 10 means a 10th-grade student.  The same goes for Flesch Kincaid and SMOG: 9th grade.    The FOG is a little different it basically means:  hard to read.  To summarise all that information, these sentences are hard to read and if you were a native speaker growing up using the language, you’d be able to understand all of this by the time you 15 years old.  This scale is not ideal for my adult additional language learners.

Next, I put that highlighted vocabulary through ‘text inspector’:

As you can see, some of the words appear to be below B2 in the EVP.  Never mind that ‘Trump’ is a proper noun.  ‘drawn’ is actually much higher than A1 since the sense here is ‘to take out of’.   Similarly, ‘telling’ is used as a gerund.  That leaves 3 out of 17 or 6% incorrectly highlighted.

It did not highlight 8 words in the English Vocabulary Profile and 4 unlisted words:

focuses, genius, laid, naive, reinforce

perception, referring, strap


empowered, disengage, mammoths, viral,


Below is the exact text that was entered:

(ADJ74C2) Each will have a two-car garage and should be no higher than the typical residential home. (ADJ75C2) Even though the written script has been “confirmed,” its contents are so great a mystery that Julie Andrews did not even mention them. (ADJ76C2) Other charities local, national and international will also benefit. (ADJ77C2) I am sure that he never expected that I would be the slightest bit interested. (ADJ78C2) The Bears’ quarterback has been better of late, but not that much better. (ADJ79C2) Only by having the opportunity to share in responsibility can we be empowered to realise our full social, economic and spiritual potential. (ADV67C2)(P3) Those poor people work so hard for less money, and some of them ask for the money from the people in the street. (ADV69C2) “There is no change to US policy regarding the sovereignty of the Senkaku Islands,” the press secretary said, apparently referring to Washington’s position of neutrality over who has sovereignty over the uninhabited islets. (CL120C2)(P5) Should I visit Brazil, I would go with my friends. (CL121C2) How quickly we forget. (CL122C2) Any customer can have a car painted any colour that he wants so long as it is black. In the event that the buckle won’t disengage, move the strap over your head and attempt to lift your legs out from underneath if you aren’t injured and able to move. (CL123C2) But I’m not so naive as to think that it doesn’t exist. (CL125C2) Trump would be a joke if it were not for the fact that he is a clear and present danger to himself, the nation and the world. (CL126C2) This will be big news were it to happen. (CL128C2) How I wish I had had this recommendation a week before! (CL129C2) It’s the extent to which it happens that I don’t know and frankly neither do you, and neither does anyone else. (CL130C2) Please consider this when deciding whether or not to purchase the book. (CL131C2) Though separated by thousands of years and kilometres, India and Germany have had a significant historical influence on each other. (CL132C2) Were it not for humans, woolly mammoths would have lived for 4,000 more years. (CL133C2) There’s perhaps a little too much telling us what a genius Zappa was without really letting us hear for ourselves; this perhaps also explains the stress laid on his “classical” compositions, as if to reinforce his serious-musician credentials. (CL135C2) Don’t you say that! (CO26C2) It’s similar to the Barefoot approach in that it focuses on the big picture, rather than tracking each and every dollar. (DE64C2) There is this perception of Baltimore being some type of dangerous, bad kind of place. (DE65C2) Many a time, life doesn’t seem fair. (DE66C2) The most important thing for a business’ success is loyalty, not how viral content becomes. (DE67C2) Canada’s women’s water polo team has been drawn into a pool with Australia, South Africa, Netherlands and Spain for the Tokyo Olympics.