How Long Does It Take To Increase Your Reading Speed?
You can increase your reading speed in hours, days, weeks, or years. The average person can read 150 – 250 words per minute (wpm), but an effective reader can read more than 400 wpm.
You can increase your reading speed faster if you increase your learning speed, take online courses, eliminate distractions, and practice daily.
You also need to consider the kind of text you are reading, as vocabulary, technicalities of the content, and fluency in the language can also affect your reading speed.
Many people wish they could read faster. They have a lot of paperwork to go through, and others have to do readings and learn the content to prepare for an exam. Fortunately, some proven ways can help you increase your reading speed.
This article will discuss different ways to increase your reading speed and how long it will take you.
How long does it take for reading speed to increase?
If you want to make a habit of reading a book every day and subsequently increase your reading speed, it can take you a month to improve your reading speed. However, there are various courses online that you can opt for, which promise to help increase reading speed in a couple of weeks.
The time required to increase your reading speed varies from person to person. You’ll have to practice every day until you can master speed reading.
According to a literature review that studied 77 studies conducted on 5,965 participants, the average oral reading rate is 183 words per minute. On the other hand, adults silently reading English Fiction can cover 175 to 300 words per minute.
The time required to increase your reading speed also depends on your technique.
How long does it take to double your reading speed?
Depending on how much effort you put, you can double your reading speed in an hour or 2 to 4 weeks. However, you will have to increase your rate of comprehension as well.
The time required to double your reading speed depends upon the amount of practice you do.
What determines how long you take to increase your reading speed?
Various factors affect the time required to increase your reading speed.
Some of them are described below.
1. The kind of content you are reading
If the content you are reading is very technical, it can take some time to increase your reading speed. This is because you will be focusing on comprehending the text as well.
The sentence structure and vocabulary might be complicated as well, affecting your reading speed.
2. Your observation skills
Your reading speed also depends upon your observation skills. If you just want the general gist of the content without diving too much into the details, you’ll be able to increase your reading speed quickly.
However, if you’re trying to note and analyze the details in the content, you will require some time to increase your reading speed.
3. Familiarity with the content
If you have background knowledge of the content you’re reading, you will read the text quickly. Background knowledge can be both literary knowledge and real-world experiences.
However, if you’re reading something new, you might be actively comprehending it. So, you might require some time with this kind of text to improve your reading speed.
4. Fluency in the language
Your fluency in the language is one of the major factors affecting your reading speed. If you’re practicing reading in your native tongue, you won’t require a lot of time to improve your reading speed.
However, it can take more than a month to practice text in a language you’ve just learned and become fluent in reading it.
How well-versed you are with vocabulary also determines your reading speed. Reading text like classic novels or technical papers with challenging vocabulary can be more problematic. You will require a couple of weeks and an understanding of the vocabulary until you become fluent.
On the other hand, you can quickly double your reading speed if you are practicing by reading blogs and articles on the internet.
Increase your learning speed to reduce the time it takes to increase your reading speed
There are tons of techniques you can employ to increase your reading speed over time. You can learn how to read the topic sentences in paragraphs and skim over the rest of the text. Or you can force yourself to read faster by moving your lips.
However, while these techniques are effective, they can affect your retention rates. Especially if you’re reading hundreds of pages to prepare for an important examination, feed-forcing your brain with words or skimming over important details is not effective.
Instead, you can increase your learning speed to cut down the time required for retaining the text information. The faster you understand and remember the content, the quicker you will read.
Here’s what you can do to increase your learning speed, and ultimately your reading speed.
1. Remove distractions when reading
Effective learning happens in a distraction-free environment. Make sure there are as few interruptions and distractions as possible in the space where you’re reading, so you can completely focus on the text you are reading.
It is effortless to pick up the phone every 10 minutes and scroll through your social media feeds. However, you should ensure that you pay complete attention to the text once you sit down to read.
Sometimes, exhaustion can also be a big distraction. If you cannot read because you have been working for long, it’s better to take a small break and rest, then resume reading with full energy.
2. Know the purpose of reading
When reading a text, you should know what you want from it to look for the right information. Ideally, your information will be primed to relevant sentences or paragraphs in the text. You can then slow down at these relevant points, take time to understand them, and then quickly read the rest of the text.
For instance, when analyzing a research paper, you might want to know the research’s topic question, methodology, and results. You can focus on the particular sections and pay special attention to them. This way, you will retain significant information while quickly reading the entire paper.
3. Take an online course to improve your memory
You might not be able to read quickly if you keep on forgetting what you just read. You would have to go through the same content over and over again until you memorize it. However, you can learn how to focus and enhance your retention skills with a practical memory course.
You can find various online courses to maximize your memory skills. For instance, Iris Reading offers a 90-minute course on maximizing memory. This video-based course covers all practical techniques to help you remember what you have read. You’ll also get a certificate after completion.
Besides memorization courses, you can also take other courses to help you increase your reading speed. Many people cannot improve their reading speed when they cannot practice regularly. In such cases, it’s important to focus on productivity and time management.
Iris Reading also offers a productivity course to help you get more done in fewer hours. It can help you strategize your day properly and efficiently allocate your time to different skills. The course consists of 33 instructional videos, amounting to more than 13 hours. You will also get access to different webinars through this course and a certificate of completion.
A great way to make the most out of these courses is to study in groups. It can be difficult to practice on your own. However, if you study with a friend, you can stay motivated throughout practice sessions and cover more.
4. Say it out loud
Instead of reading inside your head, it’s best to read aloud to retain information.
Notice how fast you talk but slow down when it comes to reading. However, if you read aloud as if you’re talking to yourself, you can retain the information more quickly and improve your reading speed.
According to various scientists, learning and memory require active involvement. When you add a production element to the text, then you are better able to remember the word because it becomes distinct in the memory.
5. Test yourself
You will speed up the learning and reading process if you regularly test what you have learned. Instead of remembering additional content continuously, retaining what you have already learned is far more effective.
You might want to sit down and finish reading in one go. But if you don’t analyze whether you’re learning or not, you will have to repeat the entire reading once again out of desperation.
Practicing also requires testing different techniques. Maybe you are trying to read aloud, but the technique might not work for you as effectively as working in groups.
This is why it’s important that you pause in between your reading and test the information you have read.
Various studies also show that testing yourself is a great way to memorize information. Once you start remembering key information, you will also become confident in what you are reading and read the next pages of the text more efficiently.
6. Practise, practice, practice
Practicing is key to memorization and improvement in your skills. Instead of reading just for one month and then leaving it in between, you should make it a habit to read different texts regularly.
When practicing reading a text, try to challenge yourself. There is no benefit in re-reading the same text repeatedly in hopes of improving your skills.
While you can read the same text quickly in every next turn, you can’t replicate the same skills to other readings and papers.
Therefore, make sure to practice your reading and learning skills efficiently.
Start with easier texts and go over them slowly. Then, challenge yourself with more difficult texts with complicated sentence structures, information, phrases, and vocabulary. Give yourself time and breaks as well.
Every time you try, make sure to go a little faster than you previously did. In this way, you will improve your reading skills slowly but efficiently.
An average reader reads around 183 words per minute. However, you can easily increase your speed to more than 200 words per minute if you practice well and improve your retention skills.
Reading is only effective if you understand what you are reading and remember the information. Therefore, it is very important to improve your learning skills as well.
To improve your learning and reading skills, you should study in a distraction-free environment and practice every day. Make sure to give yourself some time before you can master the skill.
Start with text that is easier and slowly move your way up to more technical and difficult papers. Eventually, you will deal with difficult vocabulary, sentence structure, and information.
You can also take a memorization course online to help improve your retention rates. Sign up for a memorization course at Iris Reading today and start reading quickly!