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   Introduction to the Keyboard Tutors

Who will use the Tutors ?

The tutors have been designed to help beginners and intermediate level keyboard users
improve their skills. It is not a touch typing tutor.

There are three main levels:
       => Letters
       => Words
       => Sentences

Letters

    The 'Keyhunt' game has been designed to help beginners learn the layout of the keys
on the keyboard.
    When you press one of the three 'Key Hunt' options and the 'Go' button one of the keys
on the keyboard display will be highlighted ('green").
    When you successfully type that key another will be displayed.
    The keys appear in random order with extra frequency for the vowels.
    You can choose how long to play the game: 1, 2, 3 or 5 minutes.
    At the end of the time period, or whenever you press the 'Stop' button a score summary
will be shown. This shows the key per minute and keys per second rates.
    A score grade is also shown. The grading system is based on wizard skill levels, from
'Apprentice' to 'Gandalf', corresponding with a range of keys per second scores.
    The grading system has been designed to encourage students as they all sound 'good',
yet teachers can easily see what level the students have achieved so far.
    A scoring level meter is displayed to the left of the keyboard image. This is used to
give the students a continuous indication of how they are going in terms of the keys per second rate.
    Students quickly learn to keep the level as high as they can.

There are three levels:

Level 1 - This users the core set of keys (no punctuation or numbers) and has a 'slow' clock
            to encourage beginners.

Level 2 - This users the core set of keys (no punctuation or numbers) and has a 'standard'
            clock.

Level 3 - This users an expanded set of keys including punctuation and numbers,
             and has a 'standard' clock.

Words

Single words are displayed on the screen above the keyboard. When students
    successfully type the word a new one is displayed.
There is no need to press the return key or any punctuation - the next word will be diplayed
    when the previous one is completed.
    If the wrong key is typed - the correct key will be highlighted on the keyboard display
in 'green', in the same way as the keys are displayed in the keyhunt game.
    The system will stop and not continue until the correct key is entered.
    There is a huge list of graded words that appear via random selection.
    The scoring system includes average keys per second and words per minute.
    The level meter corresponds with the key per second rate.
    There is no need to 'backspace' and to retype the correct letters in the entry area.
    What matters is typing the correct sequence of letters in the display area above the keyboard.

There are four levels - with increasingly longer and more difficult words.
    The words are mostly those that are frequently misspelt.
    This provides a link with the spelling tutorial and gives students practice with these words.

Sentences

    In this case sentences are displayed rather than single words. No punctuation, apart from
the 'space' between words is required for the first two levels.
    The scoring system includes average keys per second and words per minute.
    The level meter corresponds with the key per second rate.
    As for the words the correct key will be displayed if the wrong key is typed.
    The system will stop and not continue until the correct key is entered.
    There is no need to 'backspace' and to retype the correct letters in the entry area.
    What matters is typing the correct sequence of letters in the display area above the keyboard.

There are three levels - with increasingly longer and more difficult sentences, which appear via random selection.
    The sentences used have been selected as 'interesting', 'funny' and 'challenging'
with the latter including many difficult misspelt words.
The level 1 sentences are short and include very simple words.
     The higher levels include sentences that have a high frequency of a particular letter to help practice that letter.
    There are a large number of sentences and so students should rarely see the same sentence.
    The use of the same scoring system for easy and more difficult words and sentences encourages beginners, while setting a challenge for the more skilled students.

USspeller encourages and welcomes feedback on the 'Keyboard Tutors' and suggestions on the words and sentences.

You can contacts us via Contacts Page

Note: the letter checking with 'words' and 'sentences' is a little slow on older computers
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