Reading is in style. Something uncool has been made cool by the reading influencers on the internet. The new generation has realized that reading is healthy for us and an activity worth doing. The new generation believes in speed reading can help them stay ahead in the world. Instead of focusing on identifying individual words, speed reading involves quickly recognizing and taking in phrases or sentences on a page all at once.
Whether it’s social media, books, and periodicals at home or emails, reports, and webpages at work, the amount of information we digest appears to be increasing daily.
We will become smarter as we read more. Where, though, is the time? We need to work much more quickly than before!
What is speed reading? As the term suggests, speed reading is reading at a faster pace! Speed reading has emerged as a trend and everyone wants to hop on it. Recently, there has been a rise in speed reading, and it is here to stay.
In this blog, we’ll talk about the techniques you can use for speed reading.
- ▪ How Do Humans Read?
- ▪ Speeding Up The Process
- ▪ Does Speed Reading Have Any Benefits?
- ▪ Shut Down Your Inner Monologue
- ▪ Give Word–Chunking A Try
- ▪ Never Reread The Words On A Page
- ▪ Use Your Peripheral Vision Optimally
- ▪ Start Using A Timer
- ▪ Set A Goal Before You Start Reading
- ▪ Make Marker Your Best Friend
- ▪ Keep On Improving Your Vocabulary
- ▪ Try Skimming Through The Important Points First
- ▪ Read Purposefully
- ▪ There's No Alternative To Reading More
How Do Humans Read?
Instead of focusing on identifying individual words, speed reading involves quickly recognizing and taking in phrases or sentences on a page all at once.
Before we learn the techniques for speed reading, let’s get some basic reading knowledge.
Reading words requires our brains to decode the letters and symbols in the word in order to determine its meaning. Many studies have demonstrated that our brain processes jumbled words on a variety of levels, including visual, phonological, and linguistic.
What is an Average Human’s Reading Process?
The eyes must initially focus on a word to proceed. Every syllable is “fixed” on for about 0.25 seconds. You then begin to move your eyes to the next word. The brain switches from one word to the next in 0.1 seconds. That is also known as a “saccade”.
As per the average reading speed, you process 4-5 words, or a sentence, at once. The brain reads the full phrase again to understand the meaning after all fixations and saccades. This process takes around a second.
Overall, this indicates that the typical reader reads 200 to 300 words each minute.
Speeding Up The Process
Importance of reading different books has always been spoken about greatly. For students especially, reading has always been suggested. The market is filled with the many best books to read for students.
A common question that all enthusiastic readers ask is how to speed read. One thing all speed reading methods have in common is that you avoid “sub-vocalizing,” or hearing each word as you read it in your thoughts. Instead, since you absorb words faster than you can express them out loud, you “skip” lines or groups of words.
This is how to read a book and attain the skill of speed reading.
- Focus on word groups rather than individual words can help you avoid subvocalizing. To stop recognizing words as separate, discrete entities, relax your face and “soften” or enlarge your focus on the page.
- As you continue to practice this, your eyes will scan the page more quickly.
- When you get close to the conclusion of a line, let your side vision direct your attention to the last few words. This will make it easier for you to scan across and down to the following line more rapidly by preventing pauses in your reading (frequently at full points).
Does Speed Reading Have Any Benefits?
Speed reading is not only efficient but also a rapid skill that is now valuable. Fast reading has become an intriguing topic for many. With no loss of knowledge, this ability saves a significant amount of time. Following are some of the benefits of speed reading.
Improves Memory- It has also been demonstrated to enhance memory. Speed reading enhances brain function, enabling the reader to retain more information than before.
Improves Focus- Unbelievably, using this strategy also helps with focus. Speed reading reduces the likelihood of distraction since the brain processes a lot of information at once. The brain concentrates only on the current task.
Exercise- Speed reading serves as an exercise since, after all, the brain is a muscle. Your brain requires training to become stronger, just like the rest of your muscles.
Logical Thinking- Having a concentrated mind helps with logical reasoning. Your thinking will grow quicker as your brain adjusts to processing and organizing information so quickly. When faced with a challenge, your mind will intuitively connect the dots. Within seconds, you’ll be able to access previously saved data, identify correlations, and generate fresh ideas!
Self-Esteem- Speed reading also helps in greater things in other areas of your life as it develops a stronger brain. One of them is a rise in self-esteem. Your confidence will rise swiftly as a result of your capacity to comprehend information thoroughly in less time.
Let’s now look at some speed reading techniques if you want to know how to increase reading speed.
Shut Down Your Inner Monologue
The biggest hurdle to improving speed reading is a monologue, which is the practice of saying the words as you read in your brain.
Don’t worry if you get voices in your brain while reading. You’re alright as long as you’re reading along with your voice. Professors instruct students to silently pronounce the words in their heads as they read.
Why does everyone read out every word?
When we first learned to read, we were instructed to read aloud and sound out each word. Our teacher instructed us to say the words in our heads after we had mastered that. This is how most people still read today, and this is how the habit started. It delays the development of speed reading.
Give Word–Chunking A Try
If you want to decode how to read better and faster, word chunking can help you immensely. The method of word chunking can help you speed reading. Let’s understand this technique.
It is a technique for organizing or retaining information by breaking it down into manageable groups or chunks. Numerous research indicates that participants utilized a “chunking” method to aid in their memory of the information.
Follow these steps to practice word chunking successfully.
Step 1- Try to read three words at once with all of your attention. Keep going down the page in this manner, noting how much quicker you finish the entire page of text. You still have the ability to analyze and understand what you read, but it takes much less time.
Step 2 – With a pencil, divide the text into three portions by lightly drawing two vertical parallel lines down the paper. As usual, start at the top left corner of the page and use your hand or a piece of paper to include everything below that line.
Step 3- Pay close attention to reading each section’s text as a single unit. Organize the text into chunks and scan them like a road sign. Continue repeating this while adjusting the paper as you go down the page. You’ll see that you were moving more quickly than previously.
If you want to know how to read fast and effectively, give word chunking a try.
Never Reread The Words On A Page
To establish speed reading one needs to ensure not to re-read the words.
Make sure you stop reading the text on the page aloud.
The typical reader frequently goes back to words they have already read. You can’t speed up your reading because of this, among other things. Use a bookmark or your finger to guide you instead to avoid it.
Without pausing or turning back, keep moving your finger back and forth over the page. As you move your finger down the text, keep an eye on the words.
Use Your Peripheral Vision Optimally
If you want to know how to read really fast then give this strategy a try!
What is the peripheral vision? The capacity to notice things “out of the corner of your eye” or where you are not looking directly is known as peripheral vision. Peripheral vision is weak in young people of all ages with normal eyesight.
Utilize the methods described above to view and understand several words at once.
Try reading a line at a time as opposed to tiny chunks of words. This requires focusing on the line’s center while reading the rest of it with your peripheral vision. This method of reading the page quickly will still allow you to understand what you have read when you get to the bottom.
Start Using A Timer
Setting time limits for both skimming and scanning will help you avoid becoming bogged down trying to read every last word in a text. Set a time restriction for scanning that is even shorter (only a few seconds per paragraph), as this will force you to be more disciplined in your search for the most important information.
Speaking of “record time,” now is your chance to put yourself to the test and figure out how to read more quickly every time.
- Set a one-minute timer and read normally as the time passes. Write down how many pages you have read when the timer goes off.
- Continue doing this, improving upon your previous total each time. When you accomplish a daily or weekly goal, reward yourself.
- You can quickly boost your reading speed if you keep playing this tiny game.
Set A Goal Before You Start Reading
If you want to speed read with high retention, set a goal for yourself.
- Determine the type of knowledge you wish to have after reading something.
- What motivates you to read this?
- Why do I require this knowledge?
- How do I utilize it?
If you are a college student and have an exam on a certain topic, concentrate on the material that was covered in the lectures.
Maintaining your reading and timer testing will be easier if you hold yourself accountable. Set a goal for how many pages you want to read each day, week, etc., and make sure you meet it.
Treat yourself when you get there. Anyone can benefit from incentives!
Make Marker Your Best Friend
How to develop speed reading?
As you read, do you notice that your vision wanders across the page? Not an issue. Simply insert a marker beneath each line and read while it slides down. Doing so will guarantee you read a line at a time rather than skipping about and consuming nothing.
- Minimise the number of fixations or locations on the page where your eyes can briskly move.
- Setting an external tempo that prevents you from regressing or backsliding and forces you to stay on course
- Put your marker on top of the line you’re reading right now to use the marker approach. Slide the marker down to cover the line above as you read.
Keep On Improving Your Vocabulary
If you want to know how to improve your reading speed, the answer is simple- vocabulary. It is one of the fast reading techniques and also a key to retaining information.
The speed reading will go by more quickly for you the more words you know. Learn new words and their definitions so that you can grasp them in one sitting rather than having to look them up every few sentences.
A few hacks to improve your vocabulary-
- Use the dictionary and thesaurus- If utilized correctly, online dictionaries and thesaurus are valuable tools.
- Play word games- Classic games like crossword puzzles and scrabble can be a good method to increase your vocabulary in English.
- Use flashcards- Utilizing flashcards to study a variety of terms is a quick approach to expanding your vocabulary.
- Subscribe to the “word of the day” app- To aid in vocabulary growth, several web resources will send you a new word every day by email, a website, or an app. These words can be included in active word lists.
- Practice using new words in conversation- Make it a point to use any fascinating words you come across in your reading in conversation.
Try Skimming Through The Important Points First
How to read and understand faster in the speed reading process?
Getting the gist of a text without reading all the words is what is meant by skimming. It all comes down to recognizing which passages should be read carefully and which ones can be skipped.
Here are some tips for skimming text:
Know What you Want to Read
If you want to know how to read faster, know what you really want to read. Ask yourself what you hope to gain from the book or article before you start skimming. Consider two or three words that best represent your inquiry.
Read both Horizontally and Vertically
Your eyes move equally horizontally and vertically when you are skimming. In other words, you shift your eyes from side to side and down the page simultaneously.
Think like the Writer
Every article, book, and Web page is intended to convey some sort of point, and if you can identify the author’s methods for doing so, you may distinguish between vital and irrelevant information as you read.
Read the First Sentence in Each Paragraph
Each paragraph typically begins with an opening sentence that summarises the paragraph’s content. When you skim, read the first sentence of each paragraph before deciding whether to continue reading. Move on if it doesn’t.
If you want to know how to increase reading time, use the skimming technique. It will help you to read more books in a shorter time span.
If you want to know how to read fast for exams or if you want to know how to read and retain information, find purpose.
Reading with purpose involves using techniques to improve comprehension of the material. Here are a few steps on how to read purposefully.
1. Decide on a choice that will help you develop your skills. These are jam-packed with information that has been amassed over the years as you study more about this subject or profession.
2. Read success stories and discover the difficulties and disappointments. These will guide you through the obstacles and problems that some of your most deserving role models endured.
3. Give yourself permission to live lives that are entirely different to your own. The best thing about reading is that it allows you to live other people’s lives through their eyes.
Keep that objective in mind when you read, whether it is to learn something new, acquire knowledge, or find answers. Reading with a purpose or goal in mind motivates you to keep reading.
Having some pre-reading inquiries might speed up your understanding, particularly when you’re reading a self-help book.
There’s No Alternative To Reading More
One thing to remember is that there’s no alternative to reading. Learning the skill of fast reading will definitely benefit you and help you read more.
Books are the best way for those of us who enjoy reading to expand our horizons. They foster imaginative leaps and the development of creative ability, occasionally transporting us to imaginary locations we so brilliantly conjured in our imaginations that we were able to describe them.
Reading is important. Children who read are destined to succeed, according to the evidence. They grow a sharp sense of thinking, and as a result, they frequently have the ability to solve issues more quickly. Additionally, they are the kids who are least prone to engage in physical altercations. They are aware that there is always an alternative.
There are numerous methods you can employ to increase your reading speed. They all, in one way or another, entail scanning a page.
Excellent speed reading requires effort, self-retraining, learning to concentrate more on what is in front of you, and staying away from distractions.
Speed reading can be an effective skill if you are able to balance it with comprehension.