You may have noticed that sometimes you will see words during training that belong to a lower level than the level onto which you originally calibrated. This article explains how you progress through levels and why you sometimes move back before you move forward.
When do students move down a level?
When you finish the highest level of your first word list, then you will circle down to the level below where you calibrated before you progress to the next word list. You will not need to complete all previous levels unless you are circling down on the High School List.
For example, if you calibrated onto Level 3 of the Lower Middle School or Middle-High School List, you will circle down to Level 2 of that list before proceeding to the next list. If you calibrate onto Level 3 of the High School List, then you will circle down to Level 2 and Level 1 to sweep up any new words you don't know.
Here are a few examples of what circling down looks like on each word list.
If you calibrated on Level 2 of the Lower Middle School List, then you'll complete Level 2 and Level 3, and then you'll circle down to Level 1. When you finish Level 1 of the Lower Middle School List, you'll advance to the Middle High School List.
If you calibrate on Level 3 of the Middle-High School List, then you'll complete Level 3, Level 4, and Level 5, and then you'll circle down to Level 2. After you complete Level 2 of the Middle-High School List, you'll progress to Level 3 of the High School List (there's a bit of overlap between these lists!). You will not complete Level 1 of the Middle-High School List.
If you calibrate on Level 3 of the High School List, then you'll complete Level 3 through Level 6 before being taken to Level 2. Once you complete Level 2, you will circle down to Level 1.
Why does it work this way?
The first step in training on Membean in calibration. Our calibration process determines the word list and the level within that list that you will start training on. Calibration puts you on the word list that best matches your Goldilocks Zone; it's not too hard, and it's not too easy. However, there may be some words on the lower level that you don't know.
Gaps in your vocabulary at the lower levels will impact your ability to understand what you read and make learning harder words more difficult than gaps at the higher levels. You will encounter these "easier" words more often, and you will use them to make sense of more challenging vocabulary. By circling down to prior levels, you are strengthening the foundation of your vocabulary.
Circling down is not determined by how well you do during training. All students go through this process unless they calibrate onto Level 1 of a word list.
When studying lower level words, we encourage you to make use of the "I Know This" option. Of course, you should be cautious in its use, as you may be convinced that you know the meaning of a word just because you have seen it before. However, it may be a different meaning of the word than what you have encountered previously, or you may not know the word's exact nuance. Our philosophy is that it is always better to be safe than sorry. Doing so will ensure that you know all the words that you need to know. Remember, any word selected as IKT is fair game for quizzes; these words won't show up in the trainer, but they will show up on assessments.