Google have recently added the option to filter your search results by reading level. This could be a great feature for teachers. The virtualeconomics blog has turned this tool onto UK newspaper websites, with some interesting results:
No big surprises that the Sun, Mirror and News of the World sit together at the bottom of the list, or that they’re joined there by the commuter freebie Metro; nor that the FT contains almost no “basic” language pages and the most “advanced”. But the middle of the table is more interesting, with the Guardian scoring much the same reading age as the Daily Mail, and the Independent sitting at the top of the qualities isn’t necessarily what I’d have guessed.
What reading level do you write at?
To find out, go to Google’s advanced search page. Under ‘Reading level‘ select ‘Annotate results with reading level‘. Then to pick an entire site, enter the domain under ‘Search within a site or domain‘.
Then just run the search:
(I realise that most of the writing on my site is actually blockquotes from other sources, so in my case this really is my reading level, not a fair representation of my writing level!)