Friday, August 29, 2014

How Do You Speed Read?

If you're asking yourself "how do you speed read?", then you're in the right place.
In order to start learning the complicated process of speed reading, you need to do a self-analysis of how strong a reader you are. Start with taking the speed reading tests on our homepage and compare your scores with our average reading speed score chart. Depending on where you fall, you'll have a good idea of how far you'll have to go.
How do you Speed Read - for Strong Readers
If you find yourself to be a pretty strong reader to start out with, you won't have all that much effort that you'll need to put in. A few minor tweaks should be all you need to start speed reading immediately.
The first tweak to make is to start using your finger as you read. This is called meta-guiding, and it is one of the most incredible tricks you can use to start reading faster. As you drag your finger along the page, just slightly faster than you normally read, you can start to really put your brain to use. You'll force yourself to read faster without having to do all that much more, and you'll be answering other people's "How do you speed read?" questions before you know it. This is the kind of speed reading technique that really shouldn't work, but does for some strange reason.
How do you speed read - for weaker readers
If you have a lot of work to do, then you might want to start with cutting down on the amount of text you need to read. This is a great way to make a simple fix to increase your reading speed. The way you do this is to adopt one of two skimming techniques.
The first skimming technique, which you use on textbooks and other categorized texts that are full of subheadings. Basically, you read the subheadings all by themselves,a dn skip over any sections of text that you think will be primarily a review of something you already know. When you come to a section that you know very little about, or a place where you should be looking for specific information, then you read that section in-depth.
The second skimming method, which is good for all of the other kinds of text you encounter on a daily basis, is to use your ability to synthesize the text's direction and learn based on generalities. While this sounds really complex, all you're really doing is reading the first and last sentence of each paragraph. You should still be able to understand the general flow of the text and what kind of information you can find within the text, but you won't have to read through all of the details.
No matter which technique you decide to try, remember that in speed reading, and in learning how do you speed read, the fact of the matter is that you must practice. Check out Speed Reader X as a good speed reading program that can teach you all of the many skills you can use to increase your reading speed.

Mistakes are proof that you're Trying

Thursday, August 28, 2014

A Speed Reading Tip For Baby Boomers


It is no secret that baby boomers are growing older. Many of them are now seniors or soon will become seniors. These baby boomers are looking for ways to maintain their mental health as they grow older. In this article, I will describe how speed reading can help them accomplish this goal and much, much more.
If you are interested in staying mentally fit as you grow older, then you need to read the Baltimore and Seattle Longitudinal Study On Aging. Let me share with you some of the important information contained within these studies. The individuals in these studies were all octogenarians, seniors aged 80 years or older. What was revealed by these studies is quite important for anyone wanting to stay mentally fit as they age.
The study found that individuals who continued to read maintained a higher level of mental acuity than their coach potato friends. It appears that the brain works a lot like a muscle. At least in the sense that it is a use it or lose it part of our body. People who continue to read, and learn new things as they grow older are less like to exhibit many of the problems associated with aging. These individuals had a lower incidence of dementia, and Alzheimer's then those who sit in a chair and watched television. Let me explain why this happened.
It is believed that the extra stimulation that came from reading and learning helped their aging brains to form new connections. Although you are continually losing brain cells as you age, you can offset the effects of this loss by creating new connections. That was precisely what reading was doing for these octogenarians. And it gets even better.
Apparently, starting to read at this age also helped to keep the brain's functionally longer and better. This is good news for people who haven't pushed themselves to using their brains for many years. Some of the effects were reversible. Simply starting a vigorous program that included reading helped to keep their brain's functioning at a much higher level than seniors who simply sat and did nothing.
While reading appeared to be one of the main ways for keeping the brain young, it was also discovered that some card games also helped. Games like Pinochle and Bridge were found to help preserve mental acuity as well. The researchers believed that the memory needed to effectively play these games helped to stimulate the brain and kept it functioning at a higher level.
If you are a baby boomer, or are friends with a baby boomer, you will want to share the information contained within this article. Knowing that something as simple as reading a book, or playing card games that utilize memory can help keep the brain functioning as you age, can be a true life savior for those who want to live life to its fullest as they grow older.

Weakness of Attitude becomes Weakness of Character

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

How to Study: Speed Reading


What is the most efficient way to retain facts in your memory? How can you go through vast amounts of information, several pages of densely written material and memorize as much information as possible? I have always had this question and tried several techniques to achieve better results. One of them was speed reading or photo reading (although the two terms differ somehow).
What is speed reading?
Speed reading is a series of techniques that have been devised to increase the speed of reading without compromising retention and comprehension.
How effective is speed reading claimed to be?
Speed reading advocates claim that by adopting their techniques you can double your reading speed almost immediately. With regular everyday practice reading speeds can exceed 1000 words per minute (wpm).
How old is speed reading?
The principle is as old as 1940 when training machines were used to help increase the reading speed. Evelyn Wood is the first researcher that after an impressive "demonstration" of reading speed by her university professor decided to uncover the clues why some of us are able to read and comprehend at higher speeds than others. Her "Wood method" or "Reading Dynamics" was developed to teach how to increase your reading speed.
What device was originally used to prove that humans can perceive and comprehend words at a very high speed?
The tachistoscope was used to prove that humans can identify images that appear for as short as 2 ms.
What techniques do the proponents of speed reading use?
Several techniques have been used such as:
  • Choosing the right environment without distractions.

  • Positioning yourself at the right distance from the book or computer screen.

  • Skimming. This involves the peripheral vision and usually is performed by searching through the series of paragraphs for the important or relevant information that is necessary to perceive the main meaning of the paragraph excluding the redundant words.

  • Avoid subvocalization. This technique is one of the most important, difficult for the beginner and first to be taught among speed readers. Subvocalization includes repeating the words of a text at a lower voice or subconsciously while we read. It is a very common habit and virtually everybody succumbs. As a result, the reading speed is limited by the speed that words can be pronounced and thus to less than 300-400 wpm.

  • Meta guiding. Meta guiding involves using a guide for the eye, either a finger or a pen or some other pointer to swipe through the text. This is claimed to not only increase reading speed but also force the eyes to expand their visual field. Several repeated movements with the pointer have been proposed and in different patterns, zig-zag through the pages or at a linear motion etc.

  • Avoid backtracking through the text. It is common to re-read several chunks of text in an effort to comprehend better. It has been proven that this process helps little in understanding and at the same time decreases the reading speed.
What is PhotoReading?
PhotoReading is a product that was introduced claiming to teach how to achieve reading speeds of up to 25,000 wpm without engaging to active reading but by soft focusing through the pages and subconsciously processing them. Several attempts to achieve those reading speeds by individual researchers have not been successful.
Have my attempts at speed reading or photo reading been successful? Is it a useful tool on how to study more efficiently and decrease the amount of time needed to comprehend and memorize?
I have seen a considerable increase in reading speeds after applying speed reading techniques. This was as impressive as tripling my initial reading speeds to more than 1000 wpm. I have noticed that the efficiency of reading depends on the type of material that needs to be memorized or comprehended.
In the case of novels, short stories or in general text that is not heavy in technical terms the techniques have proven very successful to me. In regards to technical material or scientific language, text that is heavily formatted I have found it very challenging to understand and memorize at such high speeds.