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Over the past couple of weeks
we've been looking at speed reading in depth.
In this video we looked at the science of how our
eyes move over text and how our brains process that text.
And in this video we looked at some common
speed reading techniques and showed how
they're really not as effective as a lot of people want to believe they are.
So, the question still remains, though.
Are there ways you can legitimately
increase your reading speeds?
Well, I believe that there are
and in this video I want to give you
five different methods
that you can use to actually read faster.
The first method is deceptively simple
and, well, maybe a little bit inconvenient.
It's to simply read often, read widely,
and read challenging material.
I emailed a post-doctorate researcher
at the University of San Diego named Elizabeth Schotter
who's done a lot of research on speed reading for this episode.
And I asked her, what are the skills that
help people learn to read faster?
And she told me, for skilled readers who are still reading
at that 200 to 400 words per minute range,
they're people who have a lot of experience reading,
who have a lot of command over their language and vocabulary
a lot of prior background knowledge they can
use to apply to whatever it is they're reading quickly.
This indicates what you probably already know.
Reading is a skill, and like any other skill
that's worth the time to take to build,
reading does take time and practice to get good at.
Now this next method will help you
if you have the same problem with reading
that I have. When I'm trying to read non-fiction,
I really want to know what's in the book,
but I'll often find myself getting bored or,
more commonly, I'll read one sentence that will
send me down a mental rabbit hole of sorts,
and then I'll find myself daydreaming.
So to reduce the instances of boredom and daydreaming
when you're reading, I have two different ideas for you.
And the first one is to form what I call an
"Interest Link" with something you're already interested in.
And that's a term I completely just made up right now,
but the general idea is to try to connect the thing
you're reading, with something that you already have
a lot of interest in.
Another idea is to do a little bit of experimenting
to find your optimal spot for reading.
For example, this arm chair is not a good spot for me to read.
Whenever I read here I find myself daydreaming all the time,
and that's why I tend to do a lot
of my reading outside instead.
Okay, so, third method.
And this applies mainly to textbook reading
or readings where you already know the
specific type of information you want to pull out of it
or at least have a general idea.
And it is to "Pre-Read" before you start actually reading.
And by pre-reading I mean
going through the chapter headings,
the table of contents,
looking at bold and formatted text throughout the chapter,
and going to the end of chapter and
looking at the vocabulary terms
and the review questions.
By doing these things beforehand,
you're essentially priming your brain
to notice the most important information
when you're reading, and that will
let you do the next method, which,
and this is gonna go completely against everything you
probably think I've been building towards in this series.
"Skimming"
Even thought we've established that skimming is
a form of reading where your comprehension is lower,
it's still an essential skill because, let's face it,
the text that you're presented with in the book
is way more than the text that you actually need
to put into your brain.
Skimming is a great way to get yourself
through the monstrous amount of reading
you have to do to get the gist, or overall idea,
when the actual small little details aren't
quite as important to get.
Now my favorite method of skimming is one that
Cal Newport came up with called "Psuedo Skimming."
And this is basically a method when you go through
your textbook reading and you skim through
the paragraphs looking for the specific paragraphs
that are more important than the other ones.
The ones that hold main ideas, concepts,
and the things you need to remember.
Once you've identified one of these main paragraphs,
then you can slow down and read for
comprehension so you can remember what's in it.
But for the rest of them, skimming will suffice.
When you're pseudo skimming, a good way
to pick out those important paragraphs is to
pay attention to the first and last sentences
of each paragraph, because those ones will
give you an idea of what the rest of the
paragraph contains.
And, to close this video out, the fifth and final
tip for improving your reading speed... hang on.
Should we really be talking about reading speed
as the metric here, or should we look
a little bit broader and be thinkig about learning speed
as the important thing?
I think that people who wanna learn to speed read
are often motivated by this desire to
become the kind of person who can say,
"I read three books this week."
And I think that's the wrong motivation.
Reading shouldn't just be an achievement.
Like, Good Reads is not an achievements list
and your bookshelf is not a trophy case.
By the same token, though, the acquisition of knowledge
is also something that can lead you down the wrong path
because in terms of speed reading, I think it
encourages us to think of our brains like those
ticket machines that take your tickets at an
arcade and tell you how many bouncy balls
you can get at the price counter.
Our brains don't work that way, but trying to
speed read can convince us that they do,
and then we're just trying to feed the tickets in
faster and faster. That's not how learning works.
What about really taking the time to
ponder and chew on what you've learned,
compare it with your world view?
I think speed readers are constantly concerned
with this idea of comprehension, that even if
their systems work, comprehension isn't really
the only goal here.
The writer Scott Berkun put it better than I ever could.
"Reading comprehension does not equal wisdom Comprehension is for a test, wisdom is for your life."
So, here is the final method.
When you read, also take the time to
do something with what you just learned.
Take notes, write a summary, compare what
you learned with your current view of the world,
and use that information to do different things
and make better decisions.
All of this is gonna help you more effectively
encode the information, have to reread less,
and essentially will increase your overall
learning speed, which should be the goal.
Hopefully, some of the methods in this video
can help you read faster, but ultimately,
it's a matter of your priorities.
If you wanna read more, stop watching this video
and start reading.
And then make a habit of it.
If you're still interested in this subject
and want somewhere to start,
then you can check out the companion
blog post for this video, which has
some links to some other excellent articles on reading,
and also you can check out my essential list
of books for students if you want
some book recommendations.
Beyond that, if you enjoyed this video,
you can hit the "like" button to support this channel
and let me know your thoughts down in the
comments, and, as always, thanks for watching.
(upbeat music)
Hey guys, thanks so much for watching this final
video in my speed reading series.
Now if you want to get new videos every single week
on being a more effective student, then click
that big red "subscribe" button right there.
You can also get a free copy of my book
on earning better grades, so if you want one
just click the picture of the book right there.
And, as I said before, you can find all the notes
and links to other articles and the companion
blog post by clicking the orange button right there.
In last week's video we looked at some common
speed reading techniques, so check it out
if you haven't seen it.
And if you'd like to connect or ask questions,
I'm on Twitter @To
or you can leave a comment down below.
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5 Ways to Improve Your Reading Speed That ACTUALLY Work - College Info Geek

45961 Folder Collection
Sara Yao published on October 8, 2015    Grace Chen translated    Naomi Hwang reviewed
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