Fast reading is absolutely USELESS skill.

in Educationlast year


Learning of "fast reading" skill is becoming increasingly popular. In this post I'm going explaining why in my opinion it is wrong decision to spend time and money to learn it. Fast reading means yhat You "scan" pages really fast and remember only the most important informations. This is not like in Anime or SciFi where You read a book in a few seconds/minutes and remember everything.

Depending on how fast you are going to read, the skill takes from 1x up to 1yz hours to learn (and sometimes money also).
Now look at three cases of reading:

  • You are learning. Then remembering only slogans will not give you enough knowledge to pass the exam, no matter if You like that subject or not. You have to read "slowly" anyway.
  • You are not learning, but reading something that You are interested in. Then fast reading is not satisfying - You need to read "slowly" to get full experience, to be satisfied with what You have read. You want to save time on doing what You like to have more time to do what You don't like? Probably not.
  • You are not learning and You are reading something that does not interest You. Then why the hell You are reading it at all, even with high tempo?! If something does not interest You, don't read that at all! You are wasting time anyway!

So, You see that in all 3 cases fast learning is useless.

Fast learning can be useful if You have to find small information hidden deeply in fat book, without table of contents or any index, and You have to do that under pressure of time.
How many times in Your life did you have such situation? Even if You were to live 2000 years, more time You will waste on learning fast reading skill itself that save in this way.

Thanks for reading (I hope You read it slowly :) ).


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The main point in my opinion, is if your mind begins to wander then you are reading too slow. Inner voice aside, my mind is overly creative, and I need to speed up the rate to keep on topic. Otherwise I end up coming up with other pieces of the puzzle with unrelated topics im attempting to insert into the subject of the book to create something new. We humans are problem solvers, coming up with solutions is what we do. This has its uses with some subjects.

Another thing about "speed reading", is use a finger to guide your wandering eyes and attention. Staying on task will naturally speed up your reading.

But hey, it's not a race, except against time.

Okay, speeding your reading by 10-20% like You wrote with finger is ok.

Article is about "another level" of fast reading which is professionally comercialised, which is for example popular in shows like "The Brain".