11 Practical Tips to Increase Your Reading Speed

Speed reading can be a game-changer if you are drowning in documents or racing against tight deadlines.

To kick things off, figure out how fast you currently read. Then, dive into practices to pick up the pace.

Think you are stuck at the average adult speed of 200-300 words per minute? Speed reading could skyrocket that to around 1500 words per minute.

Imagine zipping through assignments, devouring novels or boosting your productivity and personal growth in record time.

But watch out for regression, that pesky habit of re-reading lines, which slows you down.

Practical Tips to Increase Your Reading Speed

Whether you are a student, a pro reader or just someone eager to hit their personal milestones, enhancing your reading speed is not just about saving time—it is about keeping your focus sharp and achieving more, sooner.

Ready to learn? We have got the tips to get you there.

Let’s get started.

11 Practical Tips to Increase Your Reading Speed

1. Improve with Word Chunking

Reading word by word is slow. Instead, try reading in groups of 3-5 words, also known as chunking.

This method helps you digest multiple words at once for faster comprehension.

Start with three words and gradually increase to five, using your peripheral vision to help.

Practice regularly to get better and faster.

Improve with Word Chunking

2. Reading Speeds for Adults

Adults have a wide range of reading speeds.

The average college student reads fiction and non-technical materials at 200-300 words per minute (wpm).

Strong readers can reach 500-700 wpm and excellent readers can hit 1000 wpm.

This variance means an average reader could be five times slower than a strong reader and ten times slower than an excellent one.

For ESL readers, maintaining a speed over 200-300 wpm in a non-native language can be challenging.

3. Measure Your Reading Speed

To find out your reading speed, choose a practice text and use a timer.

Calculate the average number of words per line and lines per page, then read for a minute.

Multiply the lines you’ve read by the average words per line to find your wpm rate. This helps you understand where you stand as a reader.

4. Timed Repeated Reading

This activity involves reading the same passage multiple times to increase speed.

Start with a short passage and read it multiple times within a set period, aiming to improve your speed with each reading.

This method helps you become more familiar with the text, increasing your reading pace.

Timed Repeated Reading

5. Use a Marker for Focus

Using a pen or ruler as a guide can help you keep track of where you are on the page and prevent regression, which slows you down.

Move the pen under the lines as you read, keeping your eyes above its tip.

This can help improve your reading speed by keeping your focus consistent.

6. Avoid Self Talk

Vocalizing or subvocalizing while reading can significantly slow you down since speaking is slower than reading with just your eyes and brain.

Try to limit this habit, especially when reading non-performance texts like fiction or non-technical materials.

However, for poetry and plays, vocalizing might enhance comprehension but at the cost of speed.

7. Take a Quick Text Preview Before Reading

Before diving into a text, spend 30-60 seconds previewing it.

Check out the title, headings and any standout features like bold or italicized words, pictures or graphs.

Skim the first sentences of each paragraph, especially in the introduction and conclusion.

This quick overview helps you grasp the main idea, the author’s purpose and the writing style, setting you up for better understanding and faster reading.

Take a Quick Text Preview Before Reading

8. Use Apps

Reading apps can be incredibly helpful for increasing reading speed through various techniques and features.

Some popular reading apps that incorporate these features include Spreeder, Acceleread and Spritz.

However, it is essential to remember that increasing reading speed should not come at the expense of comprehension.

9. Diverse Reading Practice

To excel in reading tests, immerse yourself in a variety of texts, from books to magazines and newspapers.

This exposure not only enhances your vocabulary but also helps you identify which text types you find challenging.

Focusing on these can improve your familiarity with different writing styles and how ideas flow, making reading less daunting.

10. Vocabulary Enhancement

A rich vocabulary is important for fast reading; stumbling over unknown words can slow you down significantly.

Enhance your vocabulary by engaging with diverse reading materials and media like news broadcasts.

Actively note unfamiliar words and look them up. Understanding more words means smoother, quicker reading, enabling you to absorb more content efficiently.

Vocabulary Enhancement

11. Utilizing Visual Graphics

Don’t overlook visual elements like charts, diagrams and pictures in texts.

They often convey key information more succinctly than words, summarizing main points and supporting data.

By examining these visuals and their captions, you can gain insights into the text’s core messages, enhancing your comprehension and study efficiency.

So, these were some of the tips which will help you to increase your reading speed.

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Chandan Negi
Chandan Negi

I’m the Founder of Internet Pillar - I love sharing quotes and motivational content to inspire and motivate people - #quotes #motivation #internetpillar

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