Study Hack: Speed Reading
A wise man once said, “To get the most out of one’s study time, one must tear through textbooks at the speed of Usain Bolt, taking in all the contents that matter and ditching the rest“. Now that’s all well and good for freakishly fast readers who eat pages at the rate Homer Simpson eats donuts. But what about the rest of us? Never fear, good people. We may have the solution you’re looking for …
Regardless of what you’re studying, university involves a lot of reading – whether it’s books, course notes, study guides, research papers or something else altogether. And this proves to be a hugely time-consuming element of uni, particularly so if you are a slow reader. And even if you do carry out all that reading for study, it’s often futile as you’ll either – A) be wasting time trying to absorb irrelevant and unnecessary info; or, B) not absorbing the content at all.
But don’t worry, that’s where speed reading can help!
A very brief history of speed reading:
Speed reading was not a “thing” until the 1950s, when a teacher named Evelyn Wood began to investigate why some people naturally read more quickly than others. Based on her findings, she created the speed reading system. This system was designed not just to greatly increase the rate at which one reads, but also increase information retention. After it was launched, it went on to become kind of a big deal. Find out more about Evelyn Wood here.
Speed reading in a nutshell
Speed reading is designed to help the reader absorb all the important deets of what they’re reading, and turfing the rest. The idea is to read quickly and take in groups of words together rather than looking at each individual word one at a time. Readers must also stop subvocalisation. In other words, stop saying the words in your head as you’re reading them.
Want to know?
- Here’s a great step-by-step Wikihow guide to speed reading.
- If you’re more into the visual style, here’s a great video designed to teach you to speed read in 15 minutes …
- Read your way to speed reading victory
The Co-op has numerous books on Speed Reading, all of them filled with tips, techniques and other insights to help you become a more efficient and effective reader!