About Us (The Story of PERRLA)

In the mid-90's, Gary McGuire had taught English for about 16 years. Like many teachers, Gary had a number of part-time summer jobs to supplement his income for his growing family. One of the skills he learned in those part-time jobs was how to write software, and his goal was to write record-keeping software to help him in the classroom.

At about the same time, Gary's wife, Jennifer, returned to school to become a nurse and later a family nurse practitioner. It was a scary time for her because of the challenges and demands of the courses. Gary saw how difficult it was for her to manage family and school. She was pulled in many directions and it was tough, but she was successful.

Gary decided to give nursing a try himself and entered a nursing program. Even though he already had a master's degree it didn't prepare him for writing using APA style. Formatting his papers in APA style drove him just a little crazy, so he used his software development skills to write a computer program to help him create references and citations in APA style. He wanted a program that allowed him to concentrate on the content of his papers, not the formatting.

A couple of Gary's nursing instructors told him that he should put his APA formatting tool on the Internet to help other students. He didn't think the program would sell very well, but he tried it anyway.

That was 1998 when Version 1.0 was born. Gary isn't working on PERRLA all by himself any more. He has wonderful partners keeping the software up to date and helping customers. We're now on version 7.x of PERRLA for APA and we launched PERRLA for MLA last January.

A lot of people wonder about the name; PERRLA. Gary remembered an acronym used in healthcare - PERRLA, which stands for Pupils are Equal, Round, and Reactive to Light and Accommodation. It's a good thing. It means "normal." Considering how crazy school can be, it had a restful and calming feel. PERRLA - normal. Something every student wants.

Gary also understood from personal experience that money is a serious consideration for students, so he decided that the software would be inexpensive and that we would always stay current with the latest published formatting changes.

Which is the way it remains today, 400,000+ customers later. We hope you'll recognize this is more than a business for us. Maybe you'll realize this after you use PERRLA and experience how intuitive it is - or after you come to us for our excellent Customer Support. We take pride in the quality of our software and in how we treat our customers.

Welcome to the PERRLA family!

PERRLA now has more than 400,000 customers who are:

  • Living in all 50 states in the United States, every province in Canada, and more than 30 other countries;
  • Majoring in a variety of subjects including nursing, business, psychology, criminology, and computer information systems; and
  • Studying in thousands of colleges around the world, including many colleges that require that their students use PERRLA for APA to write their papers.

PERRLA's goal is to help students write PERRLA Perfect Papers and provide exceptional customer support to members of the ever-growing PERRLA family.

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