Speed reading is a very useful tool that every student should have in his or her toolbox for a good college study method.
You should know that a student tends to spend about 50% of their time studying books.
Think of all the hours you could save by halving your reading time, or even reducing it by a third! You would get a lot of hours to devote to whatever you want, free from manuals and notes. Not bad right?
Well, for starters you can go and read this article on fast reading in 3 steps to learn the basics of speed reading.
But now let’s go on with today’s topic: the myths to dispel!
Quick Reading: Does It Work?
Many are against fast reading. There are those who argue that the price to pay for increasing reading speed is reading comprehension, which is poor.
In reality, however, it is exactly the opposite: since it is active reading, concentration increases, and the understanding of what you read remains high.
The opposite effects are when you read too fast without having mastered the technique well!
But these beliefs related to the uselessness of speed reading are accompanied by many other myths that inevitably confuse ideas and make your life difficult if you are looking for a way to speed up your study.
The 4 Myths to Dispel
Now let’s see all the false rumors about speed reading and its application together, so you can put a stone on it and forget about it!
Knowing these things will help you to approach the technique profitably right away and think about what great results!
1. You can read up to 2500 WPM
WPM is the abbreviation for “words per minute” and is the unit of measurement for the reading speed.
Numerous studies have been made around this statement which, honestly, are difficult to keep up with.
But I am convinced that in these practical cases personal experience is always an excellent yardstick and comparison.
So, based on my direct experience, I say that the average value you can reach is 600 words per minute. And you can do it by maintaining 90/100% understanding, without titanic effort. It is not a complicated undertaking, far from it.
The difficulty comes when you want to go beyond 600 WPM, and it is also true that it is possible to reach 1000 WPM, but at this point, you certainly don’t have to expect 100% understanding.
However, keep in mind that the average student travels at around 200 words per minute. So if you only got to a speed of 400 WPM you would have suddenly halved the time you spend reading.
2. Keep the Maximum Reading Speed Constant
Again, the statement is not correct.
Meanwhile, it is good to say that a normal reading speed usually is between 200/250 words per minute. If it is loose it can reach around 500.
Given these data, your reading speed varies according to what you have to read and study. There are paragraphs that you can very well scroll through and others that require a slowdown to be well received.
Therefore it is unrealistic that you will be able to maintain the best reading speed that you have been able to achieve.
In those parts of the book where you know you have to grasp the important concepts, without the need to deepen them, you can easily get to 800 words per minute even! But in the most difficult pieces, those written in a complicated way it is absolutely normal for your speed to drop at 200/300 WPM.
Let us remember that it is not a competition, your aim is always and in any case to study, therefore it makes no sense to read at super-speed if you do not understand anything that passes under your eyes.
3. Thanks to Photoreading You Can Read An Entire Page in a Second
Hear these statements and lose faith in mankind…
So, I don’t want to make you an absurd argument by explaining in detail why this statement is neither in heaven nor on earth, but I will tell you two words to make you understand.
You must know that our short-term memory, through which all the information we study passes through, is able to manage basic 5 information. Then there are those times when it manages to manage a maximum of 7 and other times when it is limited to a minimum of 3.
Given this and established the fact that in an entire page of a book there are well over 7 words, can you explain to me how it is possible for the memory to manage an entire page in a second?
Here, I said everything. I recommend: if you happen to come across photoreading, also called “photographic reading”, plug your ears and run away!
4. You Don’t Have to Say the Words as You Read
Regarding this sentence, which is rather ambiguous, I must admit that I was the first to mess up.
Basically, I had read this thing in my time, but as it was poorly explained I spent a lot of time acting badly about it!
That is, as I read, I tried hard not to hear the words in my head. Not succeeding at all, I then came to the conclusion that I was not good at speed reading.
It’s not that you don’t have to mentally pronounce the words, it’s normal for you to hear them in your head as you read. Indeed it is right, otherwise, you would not understand anything that you are seeing.
The thing NOT TO DO is to say the words out loud with your mouth, as this will slow you down.
So the trick is to read your mind, just say the words in your head. So you read at a faster speed than it would take while speaking, you save time and your understanding remains excellent.
In the End
These were the 4 myths that hover around fast reading, please be careful!
Knowing them in advance allows you to approach this discipline intelligently, being able to immediately obtain excellent results and improve over time. However, it takes extreme dedication to learn this system, which is why you might want to delegate your assignments to an essay writer while you hone your skills.