Saturday, July 13, 2013

A guide to spread

Speed reading or spread is ones techniques to read quickly and effectively. I came across the book The complete idiots guide to speed read by Abby Marks Beale with Pam Mullan on the internet and decided to read it. It promises to teach us simple ways to improve our reading speed. Beale and Mullan combine their  knowledge of 30 speed reading books and 40 years of experience into this book.

I can shorten my learnings from these books in the next few lines:

1. Learn to trust your brain. Do not, I repeat DO NOT recheck what you have comprehended. If you let your brain get it the first time, your brain will get it in the first time it self.

2. Know your speed. You can check your speed by the following method:

  • Read a passage with timer set to 1 minute.
  • Take a piece of paper and write down all the points you remember.
  • Calculate you reading speed by WPM = number of lines read x average number of words in a line
    Source: The complete idiots guide to speed reading
3. Do not read the words aloud or in your head. This is known as subvocalization. That effectively reduces your speed.

4. PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE! If you don't read how do you expect to get better?

Source: Pinterest

5. Use a pacer. A pacer is an object that is used to point to the words being read. A pacer helps you concentrate on the material better. Like your finger, pen or blank card. While reading from tablet, I prefer to use card.

6. Improve your peripheral vision. Try reading a few words or phrases at once.

7. Improve your background knowledge. This goes without saying that read more. If you have background knowledge you automatically read faster. Better vocabulary also helps in faster reads.

8. Take good care of your eyes!

Thanks for reading,
XO Ayesha


  1. That's some good stuff right there. I've done a do-it-yourself course on speed reading myself, back in the day; and there's one more important exercise which would be very useful - Read the text with the book upside down, using your finger or a pacer, as you call it. Dramatically helps in improving your reading speed. In fact, you'll notice a difference every time you do this. Try it out. :)

  2. Thank you for the tip, Akhil! I will surely try it out!


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