• Report: #303368

Complaint Review: LearningRx TRUSTED BUSINESS | Ripoff Report Verified™ …businesses you can trust. LearningRx dedicated to 100% customer satisfaction. LearningRx a successful nationwide network of brain training centers. A family of concerned passionate educators, professionals, & local business owners assisting kids & adults learn & perform faster, better, & more easily.

  • Submitted: Fri, January 25, 2008
  • Updated: Tue, October 06, 2015

  • Reported By:Englewood Colorado
Learning RX
7500 East Arapahoe Centennial, Colorado U.S.A.
  • Phone: 720-529-0780
  • Web:
  • Category: Tutoring

LearningRX REVIEW: LearningRx dedicated to 100% total customer satisfaction. LearningRx committed to the satisfaction of individuals and families who come seeking help for improvements in learning, reading, thinking, memory & attention.
*UPDATE: LearningRx pledges their commitment to Ripoff Report Corporate Advocacy, Business Remediation and Customer Satisfaction Program. A program that benefits the consumer, assures them of complete satisfaction and confidence when doing business with a member business. LearningRx is recognized by Ripoff Report Verified™ as a safe business service.

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REVIEW UPDATE: October 6 2015: LearningRx remains committed to increased customer satisfaction and has improved their business practices over the years to better serve their customers. LearningRx is truly dedicated to making sure their customers are satisfied and that any complaints which do arise are addressed promptly and fairly.

To date, LearningRx has made good faith efforts to resolve all complaints reported on Ripoff Report. Based on our experience, the member business has proven to be among the top members of the Ripoff Report Corporate Advocacy Business Remediation and Customer Satisfaction Program as a Verified Safe Business™.

Over time and since becoming a member, LearningRx has remained actively engaged and improving the way they address customer service complaints. As an active and current member of the Ripoff Report Corporate Advocacy Business Remediation and Customer Satisfaction Program we are happy to report that now more than ever LearningRx remains committed to improving customer satisfaction. [continued below]....

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Remember, no company or individual can ever satisfy 100% of the people 100% of the time. There are no products or services that will always be perfect for everyone and even the best companies will receive complaints from time to time. However, by participating in the Corporate Advocacy Program, the member business has made a commitment to working with its customers to resolve complaints quickly and fairly whenever possible.

Please keep in mind that as a consumer you have some responsibilities as well. Success has many definitions that based on your past experiences, current situation and your perceived expectations. Success with any product or service is always based on the proper application and understanding. The fastest car will not run if you never turn the engine on. Look at how you used the product or service that was provided in relation with the instructions that you received. The Corporate Advocacy Business Remediation and Customer Satisfaction Program will help you get your voice heard but please be prepared with documentation and fair representation of your concern, also have an idea of how the company can fix your concern. Can they offer additional services, extend warranties, offer a fair refund or just get you talking with someone that can help. ..let them know and let us know!

*Any consumer not receiving satisfaction from a member of the Corporate Advocacy Program should email us at editor@ripoffreport.com
 LearningRx is Ripoff Report Verified

Ripoff Report Verified™ .. part of Ripoff Report Corporate Advocacy Business Remediation & Customer Satisfaction Program.A program that benefits the consumer, assures them of complete satisfaction and confidence when doing business with a member business..

Ripoff Report Verified™ REVIEW:

EDITOR’S UPDATE: Positive rating and recognition has been given to LearningRx for its commitment to excellence in customer service.

Ripoff Report’s research indicates that LearningRx is committed to integrity in all areas of business and client relations, and has procedures and policies in place to assure that clients receive the best possible service and care. LearningRx has more than 90 brain training centers nationwide and provides brain training to thousands of clients every year. Complaints are rare but when one does arise, the company makes every reasonable effort to resolve the issue related to that complaint. LearningRx corporate management takes client feedback and satisfaction ratings seriously, and is always seeking to make improvements to the quality of their product and to customer care.

Ripoff Report was pleased to learn that LearningRx has a longstanding commitment to integrity in business, and to excellence in client satisfaction. Based on client satisfaction surveys, LearningRx receives an average customer satisfaction rating of 9.5, which is well above the national average. The company states: “One of our very intentional goals as a company is to ‘WOW’ our customers. Every year, we receive thousands of written and video testimonies from clients who are thrilled with the life-changing results they’ve experienced because of brain training at LearningRx (you can read some of these real-life stories here or watch some of our video testimonials at www.learningrxvideo.com). The stories shared by our students and their families are a powerful indicator of the value of the programs we offer. We also take the time to measure the satisfaction of each and every LearningRx client. The Satisfaction Rating asks clients, ‘On a scale of 0 to 10 (10 being highest), how likely are you to recommend LearningRx to a friend or colleague?’ Our most recent satisfaction rating, based on over 4,800 customers, was 9.54 out of 10. This is nearly 20% higher than the national average.”

The information provided in this report below is based on comments made by Tanya Mitchell during an on-site inspection held by a third party verification company with no biases toward Learning RX.

Learning RX is a company that specializes in Brain Training, a 30-year old, research-based training program for students who are struggling in the areas of reading and math, or for adults who have experienced brain trauma. Leads are acquired through a number of resources, with approximately 35% coming from parents/referrals, as well as events, workshops, mailings and internet searches. “A survey of 4,000 students over a year’s time [determined that] 9.54 out of 10 would give a referral,” states Tanya Mitchell, a representative of Learning RX.

A typical customer experience starts with the potential customer contacting Learning RX for assistance in performance, whether it’s in school or at work. At that point, the customer is then given the Woodcock Johnson Test, which tests 7 different areas to determine if there is room for improvement. A consultation is then scheduled between Learning RX and the customer/parent to discuss expectations, specific needs, and determine if Learning RX can help.



LEARNINGRX / CUSTOMER SERVICE & CARE

Some common complaints Learning RX has received relate to miscommunication of what the expectation of the parents are and what the program actually offers. “Parents put high expectations on the test. Testing is just one tool to assess a student,” states Ms. Mitchell. “We reach out to the parents to find out where the miscommunication was, and credits and refunds have been given on a case by case basis.” After receiving complaints such as these, if the parents are not happy with the training, then the training is stopped. The team at Learning RX then sit down to discuss the issue with the parent, and look at the possibility of adapting the program to better fit the student’s needs. “We strive for satisfaction with each client. Parents are not stuck with us. Also, we have seen that clients come back to us and finish out the training at a later time,” states Ms. Mitchell.

Learning RX consistently monitors their internal processes to ensure that they are doing what they can to best assist the students. They also disclose information regarding their refund policy to each customer during the initial consultation. “Each concern or complaint is taken very seriously. We recognize this program may not be the right fit for everyone. We correct any issues that improve our processes and communication,” states Ms. Mitchell. In response to the multiple complaints posted to Ripoff Report referring to customers who felt they did not receive accurate information during the initial sale of the program, Ms. Mitchell states, “Testing is a tool among many tools. It is only a snapshot of the child. What the client sees in real life far outweighs what we see in any test results. If a test result is way off, we are going to go with the parent’s insight.”

After a complaint is resolved, the Director of Learning RX follows up with the client to ensure the issue was resolved to their satisfaction. Since receiving complaints through Ripoff Report, the team at Learning RX has reviewed each individual complaint to determine what actually happened and each franchise has then reached out to the customer. “After doing our own research, we have reached out to each and every client by email or phone. The comments [made on Ripoff Report] are blatantly false and untrue. We strive to exceed all of our client’s expectations,” states Ms. Mitchell. Learning RX is continually striving to improve their service by consulting with the Better Business Bureau and the National Leaders in Customer Service.

Learning RX recognizes the value of working with Ripoff Report and the Corporate Advocacy Business Remediation and Customer Satisfaction program, and the platform it provides for businesses and customers to communicate. “As educators [and] professionals, we strive to help people live better lives. When we have the opportunity to correct a misconception because of a bad review, we do,” states Ms. Mitchell.



LEARNINGRX / Statements from founder Ken Gibson

"I struggled to read all through my school years. Back then, so little was known about the causes behind learning and reading struggles that I was essentially on my own.

Today, I would be labeled dyslexic. Many of my other cognitive skills were strong. I could (and often did) study 5 minutes before spelling tests and score 100%, but then would misspell those same words later on my written assignments.

I had an undiagnosed cognitive skill weakness that made it difficult for me to distinguish sounds and sound out words. These weaknesses made school far more difficult than it needed to be, but I compensated for my weaknesses, worked excessively hard, and persevered through to a professional graduate program.

When I began my professional career I learned that I wasn't unique in my reading struggles. Thousands of others struggled to learn and read. That motivated me to co-create the cognitive skills programs that form the foundation of LearningRx today.

Each positive result fueled our team's motivation to help more children achieve or surpass the academic level of their peers. This passion burns in me as strong today as ever! The excitement I experience seeing our brain training programs impact lives every day continues to fuel that passion.

With the continuing advancements in research and new training available from our centers all across the country, enduring the struggles that I endured as a child, accepting labels like dyslexic or ADHD, settling for low learning potential, or compensating for learning weaknesses is simply no longer necessary. Parents now have options that work.

I invite you to take a look at what LearningRx offers and contact us. I am excited, and certain that we can help.”

LEARNINGRX HELPING PARENTS

We change lives through brain training. At the root of LearningRx's success is a brain training program that has unmatched power to unlock learning potential by effectively addressing the cause behind learning and reading struggles. That cause is unseen cognitive skill weaknesses. The essence of LearningRx is best reflected in the real improvements of our students. Here is one mom's story about her 11-year-old daughter:

"We came to LearningRx because our daughter was having trouble in school. She was scoring at low levels on the national benchmark tests and her teacher had decided she could not do the work. We could tell that as time went by she was beginning to believe that she was not as smart as others and was not trying anymore. Looking back at the past few months we can see such a transition. Our daughter can now read out loud with confidence, she is getting A's and B's and her 5th grade teacher says 'You know, I just don't see what the 4th grade teacher saw! She is good at math, confident in school, and a leader in her class!'"


< br> "We are a family of caring professionals armed with the right training and tools to make a difference for parents and students. LearningRx is the answer to the heart-cry of thousands of parents of struggling students—parents who fear that their children are on the verge of being defined by discouragement, failure, and a lifetime of lost opportunity. No other solution—no matter the cost—has the power to so dramatically change all the ways a student lives and learns. The reason? We address the cause of the problem and not just the symptoms.

Parents who are looking for help for their child find a friend in LearningRx. Our unique focus on identifying and training individual cognitive skills weaknesses sets us apart from tutoring and other remedial education programs. We provide affordable testing that is available at a fraction of the cost of what other professionals charge.

Only at LearningRx do we focus on changing a student's underlying ability to learn and read. We train and strengthen cognitive skills with scientifically based and clinically proven one-on-one personalized training. You and your child are no longer limited to treating symptoms. With LearningRx training you can literally change how he or she learns and, in doing so, change the future.

LearningRx brain training centers serve a wide variety of adult needs as well. Brain training provides proven tools to help those looking for all types of skills enhancement. Career adults can gain a significant competitive edge. College students can leverage both class and study time. Senior adults can forestall or even reverse age-related mental and memory decline. Those facing the need for recovery of mental skills lost due to a traumatic brain injury see dramatic progress in a short amount of time."



PROVEN COMMITMENTS FROM LEARNINGRX.

LearningRx provides brain training that improves cognitive skills to enhance learning ability. Thousands of kids & their parents have experienced the life-changing benefits of the LearningRx program since 2003.

LearningRx is committed to enriching lives through one-on-one brain training, and has a proven track record of service to families seeking lasting improvements in cognitive performance. Clients include individuals and families impacted by learning struggles, dyslexia, ADHD, autism, memory problems and traumatic brain injuries.

In summary, after our investigation, which included discussions with management at LearningRx, Ripoff Report is convinced that LearningRx is committed to quality delivery of services resulting in total client satisfaction.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Py5QiZ6GLKg&list=UUm2APrukfNcGfSDIQ44LPIw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mj1vrImiRKg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-q4Z034aSNs

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Ripoff Report has determined that LearningRx meets Ripoff Report Verified’s standards which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints . Members of the Corporate Advocacy Business Remediation and Customer Satisfaction program do pay a fee for our on-site review, 24 hour monitoring and for support with customers to resolve any disagreements.

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Read more about why consumers should feel confident when doing business with a member of Ripoff Report's Corporate Advocacy Business Remediation & Customer Satisfaction Program. Yes, it’s a long name for a program that does a lot for both consumers and businesses alike.

Read about Ripoff Report Corporate Advocacy Business Remediation & Customer Satisfaction Program, a program that benefits the consumer and assures them of complete satisfaction and confidence when doing business with a member business. This program works.

As a matter of policy, when a business becomes a member of the Corporate Advocacy Program they agree to allow Ripoff Report to contact every client who filed a complaint so they can make things right with them. In order to confirm that the complaints were resolved, Ripoff Report is copied on all responses so we can insure that the member business did right by their customer.

NOW TO THE ORIGINAL REPORT THAT WAS FILED

-------------------------------

Learning RX to help our son with his learning disability Centennial Colorado

Let me start by saying, I have thought about this for several months before I decided to file a report. The reason, I have decided to go ahead with this, is for the parents out there that have children with learning disabilities. I would not want anyone to go through the pain and heartache we did with Learning RX. I have told everyone I come into contact with our story and hopefully they are telling everyone they know. Then I was information of this site and thought it might help more people if we told our story. My husband and I were at our lowest point of desperation to try to help our son. My husband and I looked into several learning centers to try to help our 11 year old son who struggles with learning disabilities. One of these centers just happened to be Learning RX, I was very up front with the person who was trying to "sell us". We had told her that our son had been tested by many and had been in special education at his schools for 3 years now. She did all she could to insure us that it was not an issue. After several meetings we decide to try to take out a loan for their services. We got the loan, went in and singed the papers and set up a time to start the program. One of my first concerns was, when we went in for that, the person who sold us didn't even work their any longer. The program we bought into was a 24 week program and it had 24 levels to it. The first half of the program went fairly well, after about the 12th week we hit a wall, my son was not improving at all at this point, he had only gone six levels. My husband had a meeting with them to let them know that we had some real concerns. They assured us that the second half of the program he would progress through the program much quicker and we would see a big difference. Again playing on our desperation to help our son. We continued for about another 5 weeks and our son was still on level six, he had not moved one level in this time frame. We called another meeting and they said they would have their Director of Training work with Tyler for a week, still no improvement. They kept assuring us we not only would see a difference but that the main thing was our son, the main thing ended up being money. At this point we stopped bring our son in as it was having a negative effect on him at this point. After several conversation with the new sale person, they agreed to refund us 2,000 dollars of the 5,995 we had paid, even though he had only moved six levels and I have a paper stated we would get 2/3 of that back if he did not test higher. I did send an email to the new sales person letting him know I had this paper and got no response. Although he did not test out of the program we all know he had only minimal improvement through the program. I would have paid all the money in the world to help my son but paying almost 4,000 dollars to go six levels seems a bit expensive to me. The only thing that was a positive experience with Learning RX is the trainer that was assigned to our son. He might not have been able to really help our son but he worked very hard with us and really cared about our son, for this I would like to thank Ryan. I'm not sure what our next step will be but we are seriously thinking going to the Better Business Bureau. Denise Englewood, Colorado
U.S.A.


This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/25/2008 02:59 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r//Tutoring/Learning-RX/learning-rx-network-brain-training-centers-A6FAC.htm-303368. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

Fee Adjustment

AUTHOR: Disappointed in Tennessee - ()

The Chattanooga location has since made an adjustment, and has not deducted the financing referal fee from my refund.  Therefore, I am satisfied with the refund amount.  Thank you to the Chattanooga director.

Still disappointed, though, that this program did not help my daughter or accomplish the agreed upon goals established at the beginning of our daughter's program.

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#2 Consumer Comment

Program a failure, look out for hidden fees

AUTHOR: Disappointed in Tennessee - ()

My wife and I laid out what we wanted the program to accomplish for our daughter.  The director of the Chattanooga location agreed with our goals and said that our goals would be her focus.  She recommended a particular strategy focusing on math.

Midway through, we expressed concerns that we were not seeing any results related to the agreed upon goals.  We were encourage to give it more time to kick in.  After several more sessions, our daughter was miserable, we were miserable, the main objectives were not being met, and we wanted out.

We asked for a refund of our unused sessions.  We received it, with a couple of heavy deductions.  One, in particular, was a fee that LRX paid to the finance company for the ability to refer us for financing.  This fee is clearly LRX's responsibility, and it was not disclosed to us in advance.  When I asked the director, her response was, "I didn't see any reason to tell you about it because it would not have made any difference if your daughter had finished the program."  Therefore, she admitted that she withheld information.  This fee was then deducted from our refund.

Avoid this program at all costs.  We will be stuck making payments for the next three years.  What a waste of money!!!

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#3 General Comment

Thoughts on LearningRx and learning disabilities

AUTHOR: Gwyn - ()

After having my son go through initial testing at LearningRx and seeing the results and having a two hour devoted time to review results and being offered the program, I decided to research the company when I was given the link to these reports by a trusted individual. 

I have read the 'Denise' story along with the rebuttals, and having my own personal experiences with my son over his lifespan of now almost 16 years, I feel I can relate to others with similar learning disabilities and experiences of parents attempting to do anything to help their child succeed.

I found LearningRx from googling learning disabilities, which I do from time to time, when trying to find something new out there that I feel may help my family. I called them up and was offered the testing, which I decided to pursue.  After meeting with the LearningRx center, and reviewing the results with her for about two hours, she then proceeded to offer me the program (with pricing).  I was 'shocked' at the sticker price.  I was already expecting a high number, since the method of mentioning price was clearly at the end for a reason.  I was definitely NOT expecting a price of $13,990! They suggested that my son be in the 32 week program to see the best results and that breaking through 'walls' as previously mentioned was a requirement for success, which I understand.

I feel, to be fair, after reading the rebuttal from Michael, that the center seemed to offer Denise's family a few choices to continue, even offering them the partner-free option at no cost.  I get the feeling that Denise and her family had come to a conclusion that they only wanted a refund and nothing else, since their son was not having a positive experience there any longer.  

I relate to Denise and her family, with having a son who has always struggled in school.  In my situation, my son, beginning in Kindergarten showed signs of learning issues.  He was happy, friendly, and went to school a happy boy.  He struggled with the homework in Kindergarten, but we worked through it.  By the end of Kindergarten, he was being told that he would probably struggle with the 3rd grade FCAT (a requirement here in FL).  He began being tested and put into programs for reading.  By 3rd grade, he was being pulled out of class for Reading, Writing, Speech, and Language.  He hated school.  He attended summer school as well.  And, he did homework from the time he came home until he went to bed.  He didn't have a life outside of school subjects that were very difficult and time consuming.  And, needless to say, he began hating anything that even resembled 'learning' or had the word associated with it.

Learning was hard.  And, it definitely wasn't fun.

I was able to pull him out to homeschool him (thank goodness).  It took several years before he would explain to me what he would be stuck on.  His pride was devastatingly damaged.  I had to continually explain to him that I was here to help him and wanted to understand what it was that was challenging.  

By the age of 13 or 14, he began to really change.  He seemed to have more patience with himself and with me.  He began to open up and let me know when I needed to explain something differently.  He has taught me a lot about myself.  He sees things very differently than I do and I am extremely interested in everything he sees differently.  I am amazed at how he approaches things. 

With that being said, he can also shut down very quickly when he views something as 'impossible'.  He can refuse to begin or be a part of it.  I have struggled with 'when to push' and 'when to let him relax'.  I want him to be a happy kid and also have some SELF ESTEEM.  Raising a person with no motivation could be my biggest concern. 

So, I am wondering, after reading Denise's story, that it may be possible to conclude that their son reached a point of 'thinking it was impossible to proceed', and they are not wanting to push him.  So, they decided to end the program.  It is interesting that they rated the program very high up until this point.  I know from my own personal experiences growing up, that pushing myself is when I learn the most.  Pushing myself, however, is something that comes naturally to 'me'.  I thoroughly enjoy a challenge.  I want a challenge.  I pursue challenges, when others give up.  My son, however, has had that enthusiasm taken away.  He sees challenges as NOT rewarding.  I feel that the LearningRx was trying to achieve that successful feeling with Denise's son, but they never saw it happen.  It may have been in the future for him, but he may have given up too soon.  However, I completely understand why they chose to stop.  Pushing a kid AFTER they want to stop, has little success unless they understand they will get there!  Trying to push a kid who is unmotivated is likely to end in misery.  I truly wish their SON had the motivation to continue to TRY.  The child's attitude, I believe, is an ESSENTIAL component to success, and that can't be pushed into happening.    

What is truly sad, is that spending that kind of money, is impossible for many people.  I'm not convinced that spending that large sum of money is necessary to achieve the results.  I, personally, would be spending all of my college funds for my other child on something that is NOT proven, or guaranteed.  I also think it is fair to say that requiring a company to guarantee such a thing is simply not possible.

We all want GUARANTEES when spending such a large sum of money.  And, the testimonials, to me, are very valuable when making a decision that I KNOW is a risk.

With all that being said, I truly wish the program was affordable to try.  I think the sum of money these establishments request is to ensure the 'continued desire and push' to complete it, so that the families will see the results, meanwhile they (the company) benefit financially as well.  Someone is much more likely to stop, if they don't have much at risk.

When my child is developmentally ready to push himself past what he feels currently as impossible, I feel he will be more successful at anything he pursues.  Meanwhile, I can encourage, and present to him possibilities that give him positive experiences and 'push him' as far as he is comfortable.  ( I do keep in the back of mind at all times, however, that 'comfortable' is not necessarily progress.  I am trying to keep a balance.)

I want others to see my son for his positive abilities, like being a good person, and helping others, being kind, and likeable.  He is being 'judged' continuously on his 'academic achievements'.  There is much more to him and he has allowed me to see that.  He owns a pet-sitting business and is learning customer service skills, time management, and money handling, and has his family supporting him. 

If LearningRx has the solution to 'brain training', then hopefully, one day it will be offered more affordably.  I wish them well, I wish I could try it, but the cost is making that impossible for kids who may really need it. And, it makes the cmpany more subject to ridicule.  It becomes 'not about helping the kids', but about money.  It made me feel that I had a kid who needed some intervention, and I can't do anything about it.  Not a good feeling to leave with.

 

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#4 General Comment

LearningRX Ripoff

AUTHOR: CJ - (United States of America)

We have had a similar experience.  You can read more on our report called 
LearningRX of Short Hills NJ
Preying on families that are desperately trying to help their children in just shameful.

So glad to find this site and holding companies responsible!

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#5 Consumer Comment

Response to Michael

AUTHOR: Carol - (United States of America)

I was considering using LearningRX but due to your response to the original poster and your total lack of confidentiality in the matter, I will never ever take my son to LearningRX. If the parent wants to disclose information about their child's experience that is their right. It is not your right to disclose specifics about this child's case as you have done in your posting. Not only will I never use LearningRX's services, I will ensure all of my friends are aware of how you operate.
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#6 Consumer Comment

This company's response lacks professionalism

AUTHOR: Licensed Clinical Psychologist (chi - (United States of America)

As a licensed clinical child psychologist with extensive specialization in learning and developmental disorders, I am shocked by the company's response to this family's complaint.   The use of the family's name and personal information is incredibly unprofessional.  Basic ethical standards seem to be lacking.  I also dispute the breakdown of cost/hour and actual benefit of this type of program over any type of 1:1 tutoring.  Marketing your program as "Brain training" is distressing and willfully misleading to parents, given the lack of any empirical evidence supporting this specific program over say, a dyslexia-specific tutoring program, or a program to help a child with ADHD develop better study skills. 
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#7 General Comment

"Peer Review"

AUTHOR: DrD - (United States of America)

In response to the previous posting, there seems to be confusion about what peer review is.

Research is considered to be reputable if it can pass the muster of peer review.  This is a process where three experts in a given field, who are members of the review board of a professional journal, comment on research that is submitted for publication.  This is true regardless of the academic credentials of the person(s) conducting the work (though most comes from university faculty and students).  The reviewers are established researchers with terminal degrees (typically Ph.D., M.D., etc.).

You might wonder if these "peers" might make it too easy.  Hardly.  The incentive is actually to do the opposite.  Any reviewer who lets people off easy, thereby lowering the journal's standards, is basically shooting him or herself in the professional foot.

I hold a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology and though the scientist in me is screaming for empirical evidence (particularly regarding the transfer/criterion validity), I can at least say that the idea behind the training is based on research in cognitive neuroscience. 
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#8 UPDATE Employee

Looking for 'dirt' on LearningRx...

AUTHOR: JB77 - (United States of America)

I also feel sorry for the trouble Denise experienced. This post is partially to thank her for her comments, and to share a different view for others. I do not personally know any parents who signed up a child for any of these programs, although I have met a few. I would like to pick their brains on the subject if given the chance... as long as it's somebody who doesn't work at the place and is standing right in front of me. There are so many positive advertisements and written testimonials that it all seems too good to be true. Previously, I spent three days looking for 'dirt' on LearningRx, and this is the worst I've seen so far. Read on to find out my experience with LearningRx, teaching and my two case studies.

Wouldn't we all prefer a peer-reviewed study instead?
Probably, but the kind of data I really want to see will come from an independent source, a PhD candidate. If LearningRx funded a larger-scale study than the ones they have already, would it convince those of us who are still skeptical? No, much less those who feel ripped off.. We can wait for it to happen and do nothing, or test the waters. If you aren't financially secure enough to do so with LearningRx, I would suggest waiting and trying other less-expensive options. Tutoring isn't one of the less-expensive ones, however, and, depending on what it's worth to you, homeschooling may not be, either. 

Who am I?
I am a licensed special education teacher for students with learning disabilities and have been working in a private PreK-12 school for six years. I am also a fairly-well-accomplished violinist and teach music at the school. Some of the students I have worked with have other disabilities or gifts than those I was trained to teach, but at private schools, parents have other options at their disposal. I am one of their options, and frankly, my job would be easier if I wasn't sometimes.

I understand the desperation of your situation with some of my own students with Down Syndrome, PDD, Autism/Asperger's and other 'slow learners', but I was/am the option they chose. Last summer, I stumbled upon LearningRx and was intrigued--so intrigued that I thought I would just find a teacher-training workshop that will show me how to do this "brain training" technique and be on my merry way. Three days later, with no luck on that front, I had found out that...





- there are basically two programs that do anything like this (LearningRx and Lindamood-Bell, or LMB)



- I didn't feel confident about throwing money at any of the computer-based programs out there, since I didn't even know what to expect from "brain training" on a personal level. PC-based learning would be a tough sell to administrators and parents in my book.I needed to see it for myself.



- LMB offers teacher certification courses for their programs, then you are on your own to implement it as an 'independent contractor'. Anybody can do this. Many already do in my area, and I found out that have a personal contact in a teacher who has been trained in the program and speaks well of it.She even offered to let me see her materials (I haven't yet, though).



- The only unfavorable reports about LearningRx I could find were repeats from the same author on three different websites. 



- if you want to know exactly how the programs work at LearningRx, you have to either open up a franchise, or become a trainer at one of their locations. Bummer. I'm not rich and won't be taking out a huge loan any time soon, and since no centers are closer to me than 30 minutes away, getting the extra job isn't looking too friendly, either.
 
I ended up scheduling an appointment to tour one of the centers and talk with an owner to get a better understanding of what is going on there. He gave me an hour of undivided attention--even asked me if I wanted a job, which I turned down (because of the long commute). About two weeks later, some friends helped me determine to ask for the job, but the center had just finished hiring again. I went to the other location in my state and applied. Then, about six weeks later, I finally passed the oral exam (on my second try). Due to circumstances, I won't be starting until January 2010. Yes, I still feel desperate about finding out whether this thing works and want to see it for myself and learn from others who are already successful at doing it. I feel it is the best way to go at this point because I can't make any good decisions about this from the outside. I realize that not everybody is able to do that.

This whole time I have been looking for the inside scoop on whether this will actually benefit my own students. I've become the mole, and I've been allowed to practice some of the drills with my students who are hardest to teach.

SO... DOES IT WORK???


First of all, I am not allowed to copy or sell any of the materials, so students and parents can't practice most of the drills at home even if they wanted to. This also means that I can't adequately share with parents what and why I have drilled their children in certain areas, thus leaving all the support tasks to me (as would be the case if I was serving the 'pro' agreement at the center). I am limited to the time I have in class with my students, which I teach one-on-one (a good thing). Two of them are 5 days a week, and I try to do some drills everyday. I also cannot duplicate the LearningRx environment, which is a vital part of the program.

Most of these are strikes against me having success, but they also mean that I could blame any perceived failure right now on any combination of these reasons. Therefore, I cannot say with extreme confidence that it does not work.

Two Cases

boy, 16, Multiple Learning Disabilities, ADD (not medicated)

He is the main reason I am on this hunt. I actually gave him the entire WJ-III cognitive battery, which is much more than LearningRx gives at the center. His attention, visualization, and short term memory are the weakest areas, which means he has trouble with number sense, reading, remembering, writing, spelling,attention, comprehension.... a perfect storm for school failure. He also tends to quit easily after so much failure in his school life and hours of homework each night for years.

I have tried all 26 of the drills with him, but have a few mainstays I hover around. He is so stuck in poor thinking habits and often tells me that he hates the drills that are hardest for him. "It's OK... you don't have to like it... you just have to do it", I often say, then I try to give him a short goal of "three more times" when he is wearing out. He has passed a few levels on some drills, and each time he told me "I can't do this". You're talking to the wind, buddy. Nobody can do anything if they don't try or quit trying.

Many students with learning problems are just like him. The trainer becomes a critical piece of the equation because he or she needs to take all of the negative self-talk and forget about it while trying to retrain the student to realize the positives. Many parents can't do this without long discussions, and LearningRx trainers are trained to not waste time on old habits of negative talk. In fact, each student has to write a daily "improvement" before beginning each training session, if the trainers are doing it right.

I feel that he could use the 6 month program, or even the 8 month program, and I would really like to see him get the 'pro' treatment. His parents have been through too much and I don't think they could really do the job of helping him with the homework he would have to do in the way it has to be done.

I think he would certainly benefit from LearningRx. Yes, it would cost a lot, but I wouldn't suggest any other place for any similar "tutoring" program. Perhaps I'll look into LMB a bit more to see what the comparison is. I've heard it doesn't include quite as wide of an array of drills, though.

boy, 16, Down Syndrome, very limited language skills, particularly poor expressive skills

I quickly found out that very few of the drills can be done with this student. Even the easiest drills that are game-like are too hard for him, so I have invented my own versions of them while incorporating some of the techniques. He is very resistant to change with everything new I throw at him. His language skills are like playing charades at times, until he gives up trying to tell me what he wanted to say. LearningRx is certainly giving me good ideas for helping him, and it has also given me the confidence to continue with a training course even when all outward signs show that it is "not working". This student's memory is unique. He needs lots of repetition, consistent correction and encouragement, and when he finally "gets it" after three months on a relatively simple task, it's a surprise to us both! I have not tried the reading drills with this student, as we have been using another program for that (with some success when other teachers gave up), but I would if I had the opportunity that allowed him with enough time for repetition.

So far, so good with him, but I have to know when to quit pushing sometimes and go on to something more "fun" for him.

Yes, more training is better (especially if it's WITHOUT ADDED COST). Many of the drills are so difficult at their highest levels that most people don't ever reach them by the time their program is finished at the center.

The more I learn about brain training, the more I am convinced that "it" simply comes down to practice... and a good coach. Before I had a good violin teacher/coach, I spent many hours practicing--and gained many bad habits from my "good intentions". With a good coach, all the hours I spent training my body to gain and replace my skill-set enables me to play more beautiful and challenging music. There is a certain part of training that stays with you once you "get it". If you've ever challenged yourself to do anything difficult, you know what I mean. How long did it take? Many times, I'd practice and never seem to get anywhere with a technique, and then it would suddenly appear--sometimes even after taking a few-days' break from it. I don't understand it, but the thing that I am sure helped was my constant thinking about it, working at it like it's some sort of puzzle. Now, not everybody has this kind of inner motivation. This kind of activity all works together to build the mental connections that will become the new skills. You can't declare the exact timeframe that "it" will occur, but you can estimate the duration and set your "guaranteed gains" lower so that when they are exceeded, people are even more pleased. This is what LearningRx has done, in my opinion to date.

With all the problems expressed, it seems that they are very likely due to the individual customer service of the centers involved. People really need to ask all of the hard questions before signing contracts. If you got a lawyer to look into each complaint, you would quickly find out if the case has merit in a court of law. It would be pretty hard to shut down an entire franchise with so many positive testimonials from all over the country, though, and it is unfair to pass a sweeping brush of blame on the entire lot.
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#9 Consumer Comment

Same experience in Indiana

AUTHOR: M. Mcdonough - (U.S.A.)

I had basically the same experience with the Learning Rx program in Greenwood, IN. The director tried to place the blame on us not showing up, when it was their trainer that canceled. They also offered an extension that I did refuse. Common sense tells me there is no reason to continue when they told me it would be a 12 week program, I would see amazing results, and ended up with my child failing 1st grade. Why would I continue? I didn't see the point in it. My son showed no real improvements and they continued to tell me that its slow at first, then close to the end its just like something will click and you'll see dramatic results. We went through the 12 week program they recommended, did all of the homework, paid $3500, they refused to refund anything. Learning RX did not work for my child, I would never tell anyone to use their program.
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#10 Consumer Comment

good to know

AUTHOR: Anonymous - (U.S.A.)

Thanks Denise for saving me thousands of dollars. I had the feeling when I meet with them to discuss our son that it was all about the sale for these people. Glad to know there is someone out the spreading the word on these people.
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#11 Consumer Comment

Response to advocate of Learning RX

AUTHOR: Alan - (U.S.A.)

To the person supporting Learning RX who has responded to Denise:

Initially, I am suspicious of any program that offers a guarantee when it comes to children's learning. Guarantees are for automobiles and washing machines not for children's brains. Companies like Learning RX that offer guarantees do so for marketing purposes in order to convince parents to spend thousands of dollars on their program.

Secondly, Learning RX consistently reports that practicing cognitive skills leads to improvement in cognitive skills. So what! Given sufficient practice, people improve upon anything. What they need to show is that practice in cognitive skills leads to improvement in academic achievement; e.g reading and math.

Thirdly, despite an extensive search, I have been unable to find a single carefully controlled research study in a peer reviewed professional journal that examines the effectiveness of Learning RX. It is supported solely by anecdotal evidence, which is notoriously unreliable.

Finally, to spend as much effort as Learning RX does attempting to sell franchises, especially when they have no research base, is a questionable practice.
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#12 Author of original report

Learning RX

AUTHOR: Denise - (U.S.A.)

For Michael to respond this way is not surprising and only confirms my negative feelings for him and Learning RX. Maybe he should take a closer look as to why my son missed time, I'm sure they don't keep track of when we were called by them to cancel. I will continue to spread the word about Learning RX. As a matter of fact, I spoke to a group of parents just 2 days ago who also have kids with learning disabilities at my son's new school that he will be attending next year, you know what they say, for every 5 people I tell, they tell 5 people and so on. So I'm still more than confident that I will be helping someone save not only the money but the pain and heartache we experienced.
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#13 Author of original report

BS

AUTHOR: Denise - (U.S.A.)

For Michael to come back and say this is not surprising. He should take a closer look as to why my son missed time in this program. We were nothing but dedicated and for him to suggest other wise confirms my feelings about him. I will continue to spread the work about Learning RX. In fact I just meet with a new group of parents who have kids with learning disabilities at my sons new school, you know what they say for every 5 people I tell, those people will tell 5 people and so on.
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#14 UPDATE Employee

Response to the report filed by Denise

AUTHOR: Michael - (U.S.A.)

Because at LearningRx Centennial we work very hard to put our students first and we made a number of efforts to accommodate Denise and her son's needs without success, we would like to respond to the report filed on this website. (STET) enrolled at LearningRx on January 31, 2007 in our ReadRx Partner Program, a 24 week program with 6 hours a week of training. Our Partner option, which this family chose, requires 3 hours a week of training in our center with one of our certified brain trainers and 3 hours a week of home training with his parents. Another option of training, presented at the time of consultation, is our Pro program. This program includes 5 hours a week in our center with one of our certified brain trainers.

The training program Denise chose requires a high level of commitment of parents and students. Also, in our 6 month program, we work diligently to finish our program in as close to that time as possible. Their son was progressing through the program at a decent rate with some missed time. At our 6 week checkpoint we received a parent feedback form (4/14/07) with ratings all at 3s on a scale of 1 to 3, with 1 being no improvement, 2 being minimal improvement and 3 being noticeable improvement. The Lords rated the training at a noticeable improvement level as well as problems that caused them to seek our help were also at a noticeable level of improvement. In 14 different rating areas, they rated us a 3 in all of those.

Following this preliminary check-in the student continued with the program at a decent rate with some missed time. Like with any child who has learning difficulties the student experienced challenges in the rigorous cognitive training environment which he had not previously faced elsewhere.

On 6/11/08, about 16 weeks after starting, we reached the 12 week point and received from the parents a mid training feedback form. He also was just finishing school at this point and approaching summer break. Again we received all 3s (the highest possible rating) in 14 different rating areas and with the following comments from his parents: (xxx) grades have improved along with his self-esteem, motivation, and overall desire to learn. The training program has had only a positive impact on (xxx). Ryan's (our trainer) professionalism and patience is commendable and appreciated.

At this point we followed up with a face-to-face meeting which the following was shared with us as well, seeing some progress with reading and he is enjoying it better, we want to continue our focus on reading and attention, self confidence is getting better, focus was still a struggle, and they did share a concern about how much reading progress was he making.

To maintain the quality of our program and to provide accountability for parents who choose to complete part of the training at home (our Partner program), we have a home training agreement. In this signed document we share with families that some students may take up to 6 months to a year for significant gains in academic subjects or work/skill to be evident (although reading and spelling skills are developed during ReadRx training). So, to hear that he was making gains during the program was fantastic.

We see most of our improvement near the end of the program and beyond. This is in part because students with learning disabilities or students that have struggled often have poor habits which we work to help change. After this point, we had no reason to believe there was any unhappiness or that their son was not making progress through the program, he clearly was.

During the summer, this family took more time off of the program and this is where the concerns started. In August, after school started back up is when he hit a wall. There was frustration, which again is to be expected. After all, we are challenging students with our brain procedures and working with them to face the challenges and move past them.

It was at this point that we offered to do some different things to help get the student past this point and shared these opyions with his parents. It was at this point, they shared with me they were ready to give up. In response I shared with them--and still feel 100% that it was the wrong thing to do. They agreed to allow their son to work with our Director of Training, who was very aware of what was going on and had been sitting in on all of the above mentioned meetings.

Our Director of Training noticed during the hours they spent together that the student's reading ability had improved and he was reading! Even with this news, the parents were against continuing.

As part of our business practice we do offer a guarantee, and it is as stated, If, upon completion of the full ReadRx program (through all of lesson 24) you are not satisfied with the results and there is not a three (3) year gain in a deficient reading skill as determined at the initial testing, we will provide three additional weeks of training at no cost. If the gain is still not achieved and you are still not satisfied with the program, we will refund a prorated amount (two year gain = 1/3 refund; one year gain=2/3 refund) of the difference between the ReadRx and the ThinkRx fee.

We also have a policy that refunds any used portion of the program if the family decides to discontinue training after the first week of training.

In this case we offered to bring all of the training into the center at no additional cost. As the last option we offered, which I believe would have been the best thing to do, was to finish the student's training as a Pro student, meaning we would have taken all of the training and completed it at the center with one of our master level certified brain trainers. We offered this at no additional cost to the family, which was about a $3500 value to them. We stated we would honor our guarantee and make the gains, but the family turned it down, stating one of the reasons as they were unwilling to make the drive to the center everyday.

We also offered to meet with his teachers at school to see how he was responding at school and what their goals were for him, but this too was turned down. His parents shared with us he was not being challenged at school and was getting little to no homework. We felt if he would be challenged a little more, then the results he was getting here would have shown more.

We strongly wanted to finish the program with this student and were very confident that we and more importantly the student would have made continued improvements. We care deeply about all the students we have worked with and helped and the same is still true for this family.

In the end we refunded more than the unused amount of the program.

One further note. All calls and emails from this family were answered promptly, to say otherwise is untrue.
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#15 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Learning RX has Great Satisfaction Rating

AUTHOR: Ken - (U.S.A.)

I'm sorry to hear of your disappointment. Your experience is certainly not the norm. Of the close to 4,000 students we worked with in the past year in over 60 locations, the average rating on a scale of 0 to 10 in of how likely a client would refer their friend to LearningRx is 9.3. Our NPS score (client satisfaction rating) is 72, one of the highest in the country (average US company has a NPS of 11)

Although I do not know the particulars of you son's situation and problems, I know the staff in Centennial has a great passion to help those with learning and reading problems. The 24 week program (cognitive and reading training) that you referred to, achieve average results unmatched by any other reading program. Note the following comparison of gains achieved per hour and cost per year improvement.

Tutoring: up to 80 hrs; gain 1.09
2005 Chicago Public School Study: 60,000 students; 30 tutoring programs
Average net gain: reading .09 yr; Gain/hr = .001 (best of 30 was .006)
Average cost per .06 yr gain is $833, Cost/year reading gain: $9255

Best 1-1 reading program w/o cognitive base: 150 hrs; gain 3.5 yrs
Average net gain: reading 2.5 yrs, Gain/hr = .016/hr
Average cost per 2.5 yr gain is $12,000, Cost/year reading gain: $4800

LearningRx-ReadRx w cognitive base: 72 hrs; gain 4.1
Average net gain: reading 3.6 yrs (.05/hr) Gain/hr = .05/hr
Average cost per 3.6 yr gain is $5760 Cost/year reading gain: $1600
(Plus w/o additional cost 4+ yrs average gains in seven cognitive skills)
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