We spent an average time of 126 hours and 57 minutes per year in reading. Reading speed depends on the objective of the reading:150-250 words per minute (wpm) for a comprehension, 100 wpm for a memorization, 100-200 wpm for a learning, 300 wpm is typical of a college reader, 400-700 wpm for skimming and 700 wpm for scanning. Some people read as quick as they speak (up to 240 wpm) or at best as fast as they hear (up to 360 wpm), which is still very limited speed.
Power comes from knowledge. Knowledge results mainly from reading. So people need to read more and more as we are bombarded with tons of information and knowledge everyday. To achieve this goal, reading speed is one of the program for self-improvement. Here are five of your good questions that need to be answered about it.
1.What is speed reading?
Speed reading is a priceless information processing skill using for the best way the right brain and the eye muscles. The brain can process more things visually. This method quickens the rate of our reading without reducing our retention or comprehension. The result is an expansion of our general knowledge.
Reading speed is a mind technique power which enables you to appreciate the beauty of Paris while rushing along the streets at extremely high speeds of 200 km/h.
Speed-reading is a great tool for managing information and time and for making you more knowledgeable and efficient. We speak of speed reading when you reach more than 500 wpm. Some systems claim to be able to read up to 20,000 wpm. More realistic speeds, allowing comprehension of the words on the page, vary from 600 to 2,000 wpm:
2. What does reduce speed reading?
When we make conversation with someone, our brain can easily handle 1000 wpm. But our reading speed is reduced due do the following:
– The bad habits of slow readers that we get when we are taught to read at school. Each word must be read one by one;
– When we read we stop on a word or group of words for a certain length of time;
– We re-read some paragraph to have a better understanding;
– Vocalization which is mouthing the words or pronouncing words aloud;
– sub-vocalization, which is sounding out what you are reading or saying the word in your mind, can reduce your speed by more than 18%
– lack of concentration.
3. Who needs speed reading?
Speed reading is useful for pleasure, learning, studying and working. It makes things faster and a lot easier. Reading speed is for three categories of people:
– People who enjoy reading novels, newspapers, magazines for pleasure
– The academic world
- College students
- Universities students
- Language students
– The business world who is reading written reports as minutes, reports, proposals, brochures, and e-mails.
– Work employees
– Corporate executive overloaded with information
Speed reading is designed for ordinary, nontechnical material. It is not advised for some readers such as kids under ten who are still learning how to read, those who have the difficulty in reading or suffer from dyslexia.
4. What are the techniques of speed reading?
The techniques are based on the following four principles:
1- Wider the visual span to see more words, or more lines per fixation.;
2- Minimize the vocalization;
3- Minimize the sub-vocalization;
4- Focus your mind to locate, consume and process the most important information in a short time.
Here are some techniques used for reading speed:
– Look shortly at the cover and see what is the subject matter about
– Look into the table of contents to see how the document flows and what is the basic idea
– Scan through the document quickly, only a few seconds per page. Browse the starting and closing paragraphs, the chapter titles, the pictures and captions, and everything bold in the text. Make a mental note of how it is put together and what interests you.
– Get an overall view of what the document is about and what is the purpose for the writing.
– Highlight the topics that you will want to study in details later.
– Eliminate wasted time such as the frequency and the duration of our fixations on a word or group of words
– Avoid to re-read the paragraph
– Eliminate distractions by using for instance earplugs
– Pay attention in the information
– Mental preparation: have a strategic goal in mind before starting your reading. Your mind will focus more on important points and filter unused information when you know what you are looking.
– Do not read aloud: concentrate on making reading an activity that only involves your eyes and your brain.
5. What are the forms of speed reading course?
Speed reading course can take many forms:
– on line course;
– book course;
– college or community education course;
– audio and software.