It first started out as a website called The Spark, a company founded by a couple of Harvard students in 1999. Their aim at first was to provide study guides for poetry, literature, film, philosophy and history. Later, the website would also provide study guides for other subjects such as economics, chemistry, biology, math, physics, health and sociology. The founders sold the site in 2001. Upon purchasing the website, its new owners Barnes and Noble published fifty study guides which they named spark notes.

When you go to the website, you find a homepage that’s well formatted. Its design is appealing to a visitor, and the color and font selection blend in well. The site’s navigation tools have been labeled making it easy to click on the page that you want to visit. They also have a search bar where you key in the keywords of what you’re searching for, and the results appear.

At, you will also find applications which you can download and enjoy similar features as those on the site. Some of them include:

  • Access to 50 installed study guides in your library
  • Ability to download any sparknotes com study for offline use
  • You can share your location and what you’re studying with your Facebook friends
  • You can view hundreds of study guides online.

Sparknotes strives to support its users as they prepare for tests, study literature and engaging texts for entertainment purposes. By just searching a keyword, the information that you receive from is endless.

Its analysis of books, character lists, plot overviews, symbols, themes and individual chapter summaries are a favorite with students. They also provide explanations on famous quotes and critical facts. They also offer essay topics and study questions. We have to mention in this sparknotes review that the only downside for a student is that this site does not write the essay for them.

How Sparknotes com Works

If you have a reading assignment and you forgot about it, and the deadline is close, is the place for you. They have summarized book chapters reducing the burden of a student having to read a whole book chapter. Some critics consider this as abuse, but it all depends on how you look at it. You’re not required to sign up to enjoy the site’s resources. You will find helpful information right on the homepage.

Some of the educational features at include:

  • Test preparation guides. Whether you’re doing your SATs, ACT, GRE, AP and other standardized tests, sparknotes has got you covered with the studying material.
  • Section for students to search for and research on colleges.
  • Educational books. Sparknotes has recently gone into publishing books that are resourceful towards high school and college students.

Pricing at

Their pricing is very fair. It’s free! Yes, you will not be charged to use any of their materials. They get revenue from advertisements on the site. Their business model is working for them as they register over 1.5 million visitors per month.

Quality of Service at

Looking at some of their literature samples like the tool No fear Shakespeare, the site provides information that is useful to students. Their customer care staff are available in case you get stuck navigating the site.

Content at

Majority of sparknotes reviews have applauded the website for providing unique and relevant content to its visitors. It includes material on all the major subjects ranking it as one of the top online academic service providers.

Staff at

Sparknotes com employs staff who are graduates of top colleges in the country. Some of them were tutors at graduate and undergraduate classes. It assures a potential customer that the services that are on offer are top notch. Clients who have been using the website for referencing their materials have given it thumbs up.

Conclusion on

One should note that sparknotes com does not write articles, essays or do any assignments for students. It is strictly a referencing website. They also urge students to first go through their studying materials before using sparknotes. To them, they believe directly using their materials without first reading your own is detrimental.

Teachers have claimed that the website is a cheating tool for students, but the owners have come out strongly to refute these claims. They insist that their primary objective is to help students learn not cheat. They advise their visitors to use their guides as read-along materials and not to copy them directly. If you aim to achieve something from your education, then following their guidelines is the smart move as you will be able to remember what you learned even after you’ve handed in your assignment.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *