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Google Search by Reading Level
By Barbara Bray June 13, 2011 -- 10:19 PM
Google searches now allow users to choose reading levels of the results of a search. There are three levels to choose among: basic, intermediate and advanced.
So how do you do a reading level search? After typing in a query on Google.com, look at the column of tools on the left side of the search results and you will see "All Results."
Click on "More search tools" and then click "Reading Level."
After you click on Reading Level you will see at the top of the page, three reading level choices:basic, intermediate and advancedwith the percentages right next to the levels. The percentages indicate how many results are in each reading level, and you can simply click on the level to display the results that you want.
Filtering results by reading level is a whole new new search experience. It’s great for educators, parents, and anyone wanting a choice of reading levels.
The difference between the levels is based on two criteria: vocabulary and sentence structure.
The way the Google’s algorhythm’s correlate levels is the longer the sentence with more difficult vocabulary, the more complex the sentence structure is. The more advanced level has longer, more complicated sentences and more difficult vocabulary, while the intermediate level is just one step down in terms of difficulty, and the basic level is the easiest level to read.
There are complex ideas presented at all levels; however, there are more advanced results for complex topics and more basic results for easier topics. When searching for global warming, for example, results are available at all three reading levels; however, only nine percent of the global warming sites are at the basic level, 17 percent are at the intermediate level and 72 percent are at the advanced level. Experiment doing a search with keywords around a topic you want to research and view the different levels in the results.
The more complex topics will result in fewer basic websites. Basic documents can give a surprisingly good introduction to complex topics.