Articles from
Ed Caldwell.

Speed Reading Tips: Where Is Your Mind While You Read?

Speed reading is a vastly popular keyword internet search term with several million searches per month. Many people want to discover how to do this vital information management skill today. However, before someone learns to speed read, it might be helpful to take a step back and observe something that is taken for granted.

When you read, whether it is speedy or not, what does your mind do? If you take it for granted, you might be able to move through print quickly, but then you probably won’t comprehend well.

There is no such thing as speed reading without comprehension. This has to be stated boldly. A common complaint I get when people have tried speed reading in the past is that they are able to speed up their pass through the material, but their comprehension suffers. There are various reasons for this to happen, but the fact is, if you don’t understand anything in the material, then reading is not taking place.

Reading, whether it is done with speed or not, is comprehension, or understanding the material. In order to understand the material, you have to consider your mind’s experience. As a brain trainer, I have come to understand that being aware of our thoughts is generally taken for granted. Either we’re fantasizing the future, or we are reliving the past. True conscious awareness escapes most of us most of the time.

Let’s forget about speed reading for a moment and just consider what does your mind do when you read? If you are like most people your mind is probably not present to what the print symbolizes. Your mind races ahead. Or, it wanders off into some other task that you should be considering. Or, perhaps you are remembering some pleasurable event that you’d like to be reliving, rather than paying attention to the task at hand. Or, any number of things could be occupying that mental space other than considering the print in front of you.

So, from now on, practice watching your mind as you read. What are you thinking about?

Ed Caldwell.

Speed Reading Tips: Going Beyond Individual Words to Comprehension

In many studies of the reading process and the nature of linguistics, it has been established that the reader knows well over 90 percent of the words. It is therefore unnecessary to have to pronounce each of the words to oneself as you have already learned them.

Before comprehension can be understood we must understand the relative importance and unimportance of words. Words are signals that call forth a response in the deep-well “storage banks” of the minds. If the words stand alone, the response may be incomplete or erroneous. Words only stand for things we know. The larger the “word meaning group,” the more accurate and complete comprehension may become. As it is not possible to see large meaning groups at slow rates, the advantage of faster rates for building comprehension becomes apparent. You never have totally accurate comprehension until you have seen all the words. The idea, or the concept, gives the meaning to each word and delegates the relative significance of each word.

The Master Dynamic Speed Reader must also understand the function of the eye in reading. The eye is an extension of the brain. The delicate tissues of the brain must have some protection. The eye offers that protection. The eye makes it possible for the mind to receive image impressions from external sources. The eyes are to the mind what feelers are to an insect. The eyes are to the brain what antenna is to radar. The mind constantly tells you what is in front of you. Sight, in the sense of understanding, is in the brain. When you have mastered the Dynamic Reading method, your mind moves your eyes down the page searching for meaning.

There can be no comprehension if there is nothing in the mind with which to associate the words viewed. Thus, as we generate our thinking, comprehension begins.

Thousands of words must have been placed in the storehouse of the mind before it can be of much value to you. Meaning is in people, not in words. Reading is seeing it with the eye and knowing it with the brain. Reading is thinking with an aid; the aid is the printed page.

This is a good place to again ask the question, “How fast should I read?” You should only read as fast as your mind can respond. Pre-Reading is the best way to develop high efficiency.

You should therefore be able to read anything as fast as you can think it!!!

The critical questions for a beginning speed reading student is: “How fast can
I think?” Also, “How do I get my mind to think/respond faster in relationship
to the print?”

The answers are in the training you do.