Learn the 10-finger system with Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing
Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing is a popular tutor designed to teach people how to type faster on the keyboard. It was released by Software Toolworks in 1987 (now Broderbund) and has been updated regularly to add more features and lessons. Mavis Beacon Typing can help adults, children and students to master the art of touch typing quickly and efficiently.
Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing – Concept
Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing is dedicated to physical keyboard users. It includes several features such as customized lessons, progress reports, speed tests, typing games, dictation practice, and more.
The main goal of this typing software is to help people break those bad typing habits they have acquired over the years. And, even if you know your way around a keyboard, Mavis Beacon can still teach you things about accuracy and speed.
- Teaches the 10-finger typing system
- Reduces bad typing habits
- Allows to create customized lessons
- Improves speed and accuracy through drills and tests
- Can be implemented in educational institutions and homes
- Supports Windows and Mac
- Certificate of Achievement upon completion of tests
Mavis Beacon Typing – Features
Instructions – Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing delivers an effective and comprehensive training module with a steady and gradual approach to its instruction that guides the users through every phase of the program.
Ergonomics – There is a strong emphasis on the ergonomics to make sure correct finger positioning and posture so you can avoid recurring back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, strain injury, and a host of other ailments.
Posture – Mavis Beacon will remind users to sit properly before starting any typing, and includes guidelines to take a stretch break at certain times. This is important to reduce the risk of developing poor keyboard skills that might be hard to overcome again.
Reduce Bad Habits – Particularly adults waste lots of hours poking at the keyboard because they are not trained to use it efficiently. Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing aims to help reducing those bad typing habits. This tutor specifically works on building correct muscle memory and teaches the basic life skill of 10-finger typing.
Techniques – Mavis Beacon is the Betty Crocker of Keyboards. If you are firmly the hunt-and-peck kind of typist but require starting churning out papers or writing in large quantity, then Mavis Bacon is a must. Mavis Beacon defines the genre of instruction software and it will teach you proper techniques.
Easy Configuration – Using Mavis Beacon is a snap: when you install it, you can choose your preferred language (ex: English, Spanish). Click ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ and sign in to the registration screen and provide information about your age, speed goals, and keyboard layout (i.e. whether it is a Microsoft Natural Keyboard or a Standard 101 Key Model).
Drills – Next, you will move to the Classroom, where you come across Mavis Beacon (a fictional character after whom this program is named) standing next to the video screen. You need to click the PC icon on the right side of Mavis to start your typing lessons, which start basically with a typing test.
Which drills you need depend on that first test you take and after every drill, Mavis Beacon Typing will display your rate of words per minute and motivate you by saying things like – Look out world, here comes a great typist.
Games – Once you have completed few drills, Mavis Beacon Typing will suggest you take a break from the tests and play typing games like:
- Shark Attack – where you have to correctly type words for example ‘electroencephalograph’ to save yourself from being eaten by a shark
- Chameleon Picnic – where random letters and signs march on the backs of ants across the screen. When you stroke the right key, the chameleon slurps the ant carrying that particular letter with its tongue.
Persistent Personal Coach – The developers have improved the program’s personal coach applet where you can refine your typing while working on other projects in applications like the Word Processor or any other. Whenever you feel the need to use Coach, simply right-click the Mavis icon it will call up the thermometer-like icon that determines typing speed in words per minute.
On the other hand, you can also display the virtual keyboard with transparent hands on your computer screen that types in conjunction with you, showing you the right finger positions. Users can also use the Coach to schedule their everyday typing lessons, load common documents and other templates of book reports into their word processor or any other app, or insert clip art or emoticons into their documents.
Custom Lessons and Ergo Advice – The developers have topped up Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing with information on typing ergonomics. In the software’s media center, users can evaluate their typing habits and get advice on their posture from Bob (another human-like virtual character who looks more like a crash-test dummy).
The users can watch videos regarding recognizing cumulative trauma disorders, exercises you can do to alleviate the strain due to bad posture, and instructions about setting up the workstation.
Moreover, the software’s media center lets you create customized lesson plans as per their requirements and also provide a practice area where they can retype the works of historical documents, folklore, fiction, and astronomy. These features of Mavis Beacon Typing ensure that the user remains engaged to its user interface and work on their typing skills.
Engaging Multimedia – Well, it is not the most stylishly executed program but it ensures that the user remains engaged to its contents especially the kids. The cartoony user interface keeps the kids engaged and allows them to learn while having fun. The games are quite exciting and thrilling that make sure that the user is totally occupied with its content. Moreover, the background music is catchy that is available in new age, rock, jazz, and blues. On the other hand, the tutorials and other videos are pretty decent and helpful.
Mavis Beacon Typing 2018 – 3 Versions
The tutor currently offers three versions for the users that are designed according to the requirements of users of all age group (8-88). The versions of Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing include:
- Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing – Personal Edition
- Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing – Family Edition
- Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing – Kids Edition
Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing – Personal Edition
Mavis Beacon’s Personal Edition is powered by Ultrakey that is composed after the collaborative efforts of several specialists like professional technologists, curriculum specialists, educational designers, and practicing educators who helped in creating a program that is aimed at strain-free and effective learning.
The Personal Edition is tailored to individual needs, intended for those who have had some experience with keyboard typing or the beginners. It is good for the beginners as Mavis offers straightforward explanations and introductions of various typing modules and skills and allows the user to practice what they have learned so that they can build up their confidence.
What’s in the Version?
The platform offers the most efficient approach to learning and mastering keyboard typing fundamentals.
- Improved user-friendly interface
- 100+ typing tests and skill checks
- Monitor your progress
- Learn to type on an individual level
- 12 updated video illustrations
- Celebrate achievements, set personal goals
Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing – Family Edition
Unlike the Personal Edition, the Family Edition includes three license-installs that allow it to be used on three different PCs. Moreover, the Family Edition of Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing allows you to manage up to eight users.
The integrated Parent Guide and Family Management Tool ensure multiple users are using the platform at the same time. As the name suggests, the Family Edition is designed for the whole family.
The tutor uses a success-based approach to typing instruction. Thereby Mavis offers a motivating and powerful way to learn typing for kids and parents with a clear path to learning new skills.
What’s in the Version?
Mavis Beacon Family is something that the entire family can make use of. It has been exclusively tailored to suit certain age groups.
- Learn good posture habits
- Learn new keys
- Personalize your program
- Follow the step-by-step guide to achieve positive results within 8 hours
- 18 updated video illustrations
- Practice excellent typing
Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing – Kids Edition
As the name suggests, Mavis Beacon Kidz Edition is specifically designed for children between 8-12 age group. However, this criteria should not be seen as a strict limitation as the tests and games are quite robust that even adults can use it.
What makes this version different from the previous versions is that the platform has a strong emphasis on games and other engaging activities that makes typing fun and engaging for children. The program is designed to build children’s motivation to learn how to type. Kidz Edition is light and doesn’t put stress on kids regarding the tests and other activities.
What’s in the Version?
Mavis Beacon Kidz features additions projected to help kids learn how to type faster without any error.
- Teaches the 10 finger system.
- Boost muscle memory of kids
- 250+ keyboarding lessons
- Printable awards
- A detailed map of the curriculum
- Customizable music section
Mavis Beacon – Pros and Cons
- Effective exercises
- Customizable goals and classes
- Efficacy and user-friendliness
- Three versions for different individual requirements
- Outperforms other software regarding the number of games, performance, and activities
- The Program is limited to certain number of installs
- Limited Multimedia and no cookie
- Personal Edition is not suitable for Multiple users
Probably the most known tutors that will compete with Mavis Beacon Typing for new students and customers are Typesy, KAZ and Ultrakey. They are all up to date and have their very own characteristics.
Typesy offers expert video training, excellent tracking and hundreds of activities. KAZ is known for its “we will teach you the keyboard in 90 minutes” approach. And, Ultrakey provides the technology actually built into Mavis.
Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing 2018 – Review Verdict
Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing is amongst one of the best educational software available on the market and comes with three different versions for people of all age groups. What makes this tutor stand out from the crowd is the systematic approach it follows for practicing keys and merging them to form words and sentences.
As a bottom line, it therefore doesn’t matter whether you are a beginner or know your way around keyboard typing, Mavis Beacon can effectively help you polish and master the art of 10-finger typing.
Have you tried one the versions of Mavis Beacon Typing 2018? If so, please let us know your opinion in the comments below.