About Prompt

Brad, Jordan, and John are MIT grads who founded Prompt with a mission of making people better writers.

Brad
Brad
Jordan
Jordan
John
John

As writers, they all separately came to the realization that defines Prompt: receiving and acting on written feedback provided by subject-knowledgeable people is the best way to improve writing skills.

In 2013, they found each other, and in 2014, a company was born. Today, Prompt is the world leader in high-quality, timely, instructional feedback on the higher-order aspects of writing (e.g., content, structure, clarity).

History

Here’s a short history of Prompt and our philosophy as told by Brad Schiller, our eternally optimistic CEO:

2014
When we launched in 2014, we were part-time. John and Jordan were still at MIT studying computer science, and I was a freelance consultant. We did all of the reviews ourselves. As it turns out, providing people an option to get their reviews in 6 hours, 24/7, was a bad call. We were working at all hours of the day and night. Yet, we found we were onto something—people loved our thorough, instructional, and actionable feedback.
2015
In 2015, we realized most people don’t know they need help with writing. To combat this, we ran an experiment. We allowed people to submit their writing for free. We provided feedback on thousands of essays and learned three things that are ingrained in our philosophy today:
  1. Learning to write is an iterative process. Most students don’t want to completely rewrite their essays. Instead, we found they wanted to improve their writing in less than 30 minutes. We focus on the two to three core issues with each essay, enabling students to improve their skills over time.
  2. Tone is critical. Students are motivated by positive, upbeat language that makes them feel they can take action and succeed.
  3. Action is the priority. Merely identifying what is wrong is not enough. Most students don’t know what to do with a comment like “you don’t have a thesis statement.” Instead, it’s important to instruct students about what the problem is (e.g., here’s what a thesis statement is) and provide clear instructions for students to act (e.g., here’s how to think about your thesis statement in the context of your assignment and thoughts).
2016
Our admissions essay feedback business started growing quickly.
2017 - 2019
Between 2016 and 2019, we more than doubled in size each year while continuing to improve quality.
2019
By 2019, we were the world’s largest provider of high-quality admissions essay feedback in the world, doing five times as many reviews as the next closest company.
Now, we support students on all types of writing. We work directly with educational institutions to provide writing feedback capacity through our virtual writing center, and we work directly with families. It’s beautiful to see the tens of thousands of students we work with succeed in improving their writing skills and achieving their goals. Let us help you.

Our writing feedback is what great teachers provide when they have more time

Writing is a lot more than grammar. Since our beginning, we’ve focused on the higher-order aspects of writing: content, structure, and clarity.

Our approach is like that of a great teacher; we identify gaps (and what works), provide instruction, and detail actions the student can take.

  • We prioritize which areas the student should focus on first.
  • We guide students to act on our feedback, a critical part of the learning process.
  • We use a tone that keeps students motivated.

The most important thing we offer is time. The world’s education system is not set up to support students with writing. It’s a math problem (our founders did go to MIT after all). Let’s say a teacher has 100 students across their classes. Spending just 5 minutes providing feedback on each essay would take over 8 hours. Now, we know 5 minutes is not enough. At Prompt, we’ve found common essays require 12-15 minutes, and critical essays like those for college admissions require about 45. As such, a great teacher would need to spend over 20 hours providing feedback on a single writing assignment – along with everything else they need to teach.

We provide K-12 and higher education institutions with access to writing feedback capacity delivered within hours rather than weeks, enabling students to get feedback and act on it while their writing is still fresh in their minds.

We find great Writing Coaches

We accept less than 7% of candidates into our network and continuously monitor their results. We have a rigorous process for onboarding new coaches whereby we screen for certain traits: thoroughness, thoughtfulness, and tone. Then, coaches go through hours of orientation and evaluation before they’re admitted to the network.

Our Writing Coaches have a wide range of life experiences and backgrounds, including teachers, professors, journalists, authors, and playwrights. We find there are many common threads: 80% have an advanced degree (all have undergrad degrees). 75% have prior teaching experience. All are passionate about working with students to improve their writing skills.

Consistent, instructional feedback for all of your students

Writing tutoring and coaching is really hard. We’ve figured it out and have the capacity to provide thousands of thorough, quality reviews within hours. Writing coaching is very different from math, test prep, or spoken language tutoring. In writing, there are many shades of “right” and many ability levels.

Writing coaching best occurs asynchronously. It’s not practical for a coach to wait on a video call while a student practices writing. Live feedback doesn’t allow a coach to strategize deeply about the essay and doesn’t provide a thoughtful, written roadmap for implementing the feedback. Written feedback allows the coach to think and the student to internalize and execute on the feedback. We do offer live coaching calls for helping students get started before they write.

We excel at operations. The first step is to identify talented coaches who are thorough, thoughtful, and relentlessly positive. The second step is to implement a clearly defined process coaches follow that incentivizes the growth of every student’s abilities and concentrates on actionable instruction. The third step is to operate as a managed community, allowing more experienced coaches to quality check other coaches while also allowing all coaches to ask for a second pair of eyes whenever they are unsure about a recommendation.

Get to know us better. Dial 1-844-5-PROMPT.