The IDL Story: Our Vision and Mission

IDL develop award-winning software solutions for schools around the world and is part of the Ascentis Group. IDL's vision is centred on creating life-changing opportunities for all and our mission is to enable learning through innovative education and exceptional customer service. This mission was brought to life in the mid-1980s when IDL was devised by educators working with the Starcross Educational Research Association.

In 2012, the "Lifting Barriers" programme, funded by the Big Lottery, allowed IDL to be developed for use within a school environment in collaboration with SENCo leaders. Over three years, IDL was implemented in 120 primary and secondary schools across the North West. IDL demonstrated a notable increase in reading and spelling ages and a significant rise in confidence and self-esteem for pupils with dyslexia and other learning difficulties.

Since then, IDL's usage has surged, with schools nationwide and overseas adopting the programmes and showcasing real improvements for pupils with SEN.


Ascentis & IDL: Revolutionising Education for Lifelong Learning

Who is Ascentis?

Ascentis, part of the Ascentis Group, is an educational charity and awarding body. Our twofold identity sets us apart in the educational sector:

  1. We are an Awarding Organisation operating under the regulation of Ofqual, Qualifications Wales and CCEA Regulation.
  2. We serve as an Access Validating Agency for Access to Higher Education diplomas, entrusted with a licence from the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education.

With no shareholders, our focus is undivided: to provide optimal service to all our customers. As a recognised charity, we commit to enabling learners to climb the 'qualifications ladder' and achieve their lifelong aspirations.

Who is Ascentis?
Ascentis & IDL: Revolutionising Education for Lifelong Learning

What is the IDL Educational Portfolio?

IDL's award-winning educational software portfolio includes the following: 

IDL Literacy

IDL Literacy is an intervention software proven to deliver highly effective support for those with dyslexia or lower-level literacy ability. The success of the programme has been demonstrated in schools and tuition centres around the UK and overseas for over 40 years.

IDL Numeracy

IDL Numeracy has been developed to help learners with dyscalculia and lower-level maths ability. It includes a fully graded course to support the numeracy curriculum at primary level in England and Scotland. In order to be inclusive, the lessons are designed to reduce the stress those with dyscalculia would ordinarily feel when faced with mathematical problems.

IDL Wellbeing

IDL Wellbeing is an exciting new product designed to integrate with a whole-school approach to mental health, behaviour management and mental toughness. Following two years of development alongside a psychologist, IDL Wellbeing has been developed using contemporary theories and mindfulness practices. Studies have proven that teaching resilience and emotional literacy can reduce incidents of poor mental health later. 

IDL Literacy Screener

The IDL Literacy Screener is a simple, effective online tool that can be used to highlight dyslexic-type difficulties. It can be used with groups and individuals where there may be a concern about their literacy progress.

IDL Numeracy Screener

The IDL Numeracy Screener helps identify areas in which a pupil might struggle and any signs of dyscalculic tendencies. It can be used to screen an entire year group, or individual pupils who are showing signs of maths anxiety or particular maths difficulties.

IDL Maths Tutorials

IDL Maths Tutorials are a series of tutorial videos that have been designed to support pupils in solving maths problems independently and can be used in conjunction with IDL Numeracy. Developed in consultation with educational specialists including Judy Hornigold, the animations cover topics such as counting, fractions and 3D shapes. They can also be used by teachers as a whole-class teaching tool.

IDL Multiplication Tables Check

The IDL Multiplication Tables Check is a revision tool prepares learners for the mandatory Multiplication Table Check (MTC), which is now statutory for all Year 4 pupils in England. The IDL MTC has been designed in line with the national curriculum, enabling pupils to practise their times tables in advance of taking the government test. This allows you to identify pupils who have not yet mastered their times tables, so that additional support can be provided.

Ascentis & IDL: Revolutionising Education for Lifelong Learning

Benefits of an IDL Licence

Schools using IDL products benefit from:

An unlimited user licence: This feature empowers an infinite number of learners to utilise the programmes on as many devices as required. Whether in a school setting or a bustling household, the unlimited user licence accommodates all, making IDL a highly flexible learning tool.

A user-friendly interface: IDL ensures education is never complicated, featuring a simple, easy to use interface. Additionally, progress tracking is achievable with a click of a button, making educators' work efficient and streamlined.

A comprehensive resource portfolio: IDL offers an extensive array of educational resources. These include Animated Maths Tutorials that make complex problems enjoyable, Literacy & Numeracy Screening to identify areas of improvement, and Times Tables practice to perfect the basic building blocks of maths.

Touch typing and subject-specific spelling exercises: IDL recognises the importance of honing essential skills. It offers subject-specific touch typing exercises and spelling drills, making it an ideal homework or exam preparation tool.

Independent learning: IDL supports self-reliance in learners, encouraging them to take control of their learning journey with minimal tutor supervision. This enhances their knowledge, nurtures their problem-solving skills and boosts their confidence.

Cross-platform accessibility: IDL can be used desktops, iPads and tablets. This seamless cross-platform accessibility allows learners to embark on their educational adventure from any corner of the world.

Downloadable certificates: Nothing motivates pupils more than the recognition of their progress. IDL provides downloadable certificates celebrating learner achievements, serving as an enduring testament to their diligence and progress.

Progress reporting: To ensure comprehensive monitoring of learner development, IDL provides detailed graphs and reports. This helps track individual and group improvements, making it easier for educators and parents to understand and support the learning process.

Dedicated support: To ensure a smooth and uninterrupted learning experience, IDL has a team of technical support professionals and customer service advisors at your disposal. Always ready to assist, they promptly address any queries or issues.

Ascentis & IDL: Revolutionising Education for Lifelong Learning

Join our Journey

Ascentis and IDL offer more than just a journey through education; we represent a journey towards a future where everyone can achieve their potential. 

Learn more about our offerings and join the learning revolution by requesting a free trial today. 

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Watch Our Client Videos

Ascentis helps change the lives of over 170,000 learners each year. Hear about why our staff love working for us, and why our customers love working with us.

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Leicester Adult Skills and Learning Service Speaking about Ascentis English & Maths Stepping Stones

Ascentis has a fantastic suite of English and Maths Stepping Stones qualifications which enable learners to focus on specific skills, build their confidence and progress onto further learning. This testimonial video features Leicester Adult Skills and Learning Service who outline the benefits to them and their learners of using these qualifications.

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The City of Liverpool College Speaking about Ascentis Access to Higher Education

Access to HE with Ascentis - We Make a Difference. Watch our Testimonial and hear how it makes a difference to learners and the opportunities it brings.

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Best Practice People Speaking about Ascentis Short Online Qualifications

The Ascentis Short Online Qualifications are delivered in many centres across the UK and help to support learners’ Personal Development, Behaviour and Welfare. Listen to Ascentis Customer, Best Practice People talk about how effective the Ascentis Short Online Qualifications are and how they successfully aid their NEET learners, improving skills and confidence in turn helping them secure employment.

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What our happy customers say

“We are very pleased that we made the move to Ascentis for all our ESOL exams. The exams are appropriate for our learners, and lecturers find the marking manageable. As an organisation, Ascentis is a pleasure to work with. Our queries are always dealt with quickly and we are extremely well supported by our verifier.”

Waltham Forest

“We have thoroughly enjoyed our first year with Ascentis. There has been support of a high quality throughout the academic year. Support has been provided through a variety of roles including the quality managers, lead EQA’s and subject moderators.”

Bradford College

“We have been delighted with the impact Ascentis Extended Awards in Mathematical Skills (Stepping Stones) have had on our student’s progression towards their functional skills mathematics as well as preparing them for the completion of their GCSE. It has taught them the essential skills in mathematics which enabled them to deal with the practical problems and challenges of life – at home, in education and at work. These skills are valued by employers and further education, and are a platform on which to build other employability skills. We are also very impressed with the level of service and commitment shown by the staff of Ascentis, they are always available to help whenever help is needed.”

Brent Start

“The transparency and support of Ascentis has been refreshing. Our moderation process has been a pleasure and developmental feedback has always been welcomed.”

Kensington & Chelsea College

21st Nov 2024

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