How To Read Faster Without Sacrificing Comprehension
reading comprehension

How To Read Faster Without Sacrificing Comprehension

reading comprehension

How’s your reading challenge going so far? If your book pile is starting to collect dust, this is an excellent opportunity to learn how to speed read and meet your book goal for the year. Some people find that it is hard to believe that speed reading increases comprehension, but it’s true! Although it may seem like you miss a lot of information by reading quickly, you retain it better and improve your memory. One thing you never want to do and label as “speed reading” is reading bits and pieces of a document, textbook, or novel. After all, reading is an enjoyable activity, and you’ll hurt your understanding of the text when you try a quick shortcut to meet your goal.

Speed reading is a balance between pace and comprehension. With the techniques described below, you can learn to read faster without sacrificing comprehension.

Familiarize yourself with the material

If you know the material, familiarizing yourself with it isn’t necessary. But if you are unfamiliar with it, you will want to get an idea of what it is. For example, if you are a lawyer and are reviewing information for a case you’ve been involved in for months, speed reading would be an effective way of going through documents, learn what is in them, and still get home in time to watch the Voice.

If you are unfamiliar with the content, get familiar with it. Using the same example from above, a lawyer reading a new study about advancements in medicine that are promising in finding a cure for cancer might require some time reviewing the content. Many times you can read the abstract of an article or study and then begin to speed read. 

Minimize Subvocalization

Subvocalization involves saying words in your head while reading. It slows you down and can hurt your reading comprehension. In a previous article, Speed Reading Tips: 5 Ways to Minimize Subvocalization, we suggested five ways to quiet your mind so you can read faster. If you haven’t already, try the following while speed reading: 

  • Use your hand to guide your eyes while reading.
  • Distract yourself.
  • Listen to music while reading.
  • Use the AccelaReader RSVP Application.
  • Force yourself to read faster than you usually would.

While it is impossible to eliminate subvocalization, these ways will help reduce it and increase comprehension.

Go easy on yourself

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and like anything else in life, speed reading requires patience and practice. Rather than jumping in and speed reading an important document for work, try to speed read with a novel you’re reading. Set a time to see how quickly you can get through a chapter. Write down everything you remember from that chapter. Have more fun with speed reading, and have a friend quiz you to see how much information you remembered correctly.

Take a course

Are you still having trouble balancing speed reading with comprehension? We’ve created online courses to teach you how to speed read properly. You’ll gain access to our AccelaReader tool to advance your speed reading skills further. Our courses explain in detail how to use AccelaReader and quiz you on your reading skills. 

Find out more today and how you can retain comprehension as you increase your reading speed.

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