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Tips For Increasing Reading Speed
As our eyes move across the page they make a series of jerky
movements. Whenever they come to rest on a word that is called a
fixation. Most people fixate once on each word across a line of
In order to make our speed increase we must take in more words
with each fixation, rather than make our eyes move faster.
- Try to avoid focusing on every word, but rather look at
groups of 2 to 3 words. For instance, this sentence could be
grouped in this manner:
for instance / this sentence / could be grouped / in this
- Work on vocabulary improvement. Familiarize yourself with new
words so you don't get stuck on them when you read them again.
- If you find yourself moving your lips when reading, force
yourself to read faster by following (1.) above so that you can
no longer move your lips.
- Read more! 15 minutes a day of reading an average size novel
equals 18 books a year at an average reading speed!
- Determine your purpose before reading. If you only need main
ideas, then allow yourself to skim the material. Don't feel you
must read every word.
- Spend a few minutes a day reading at a faster than
comfortable rate (about 2 to 3 times faster than your normal
speed). Use your hand or an index card to guide your eyes down
the page. Then time yourself reading a few pages at your normal
speed. You'll find that often your normal reading speed will
increase after your skimming practice.
- If you have poor concentration when reading, practice reading
for only 5 - 10 minutes at a time and gradually increase this
- There are several books on increasing reading speed available
in most bookstores. If you are serious about increasing your rate
you may want to work systematically through one of these books.