You don't have to be a student to appreciate the usefulness of speed-reading. Every day, we are presented with hours of reading material, from email and textbooks to work documents and print media. Becoming a faster reader can save time. Speed-reading software teaches you how to increase your reading speed. The best programs will also help you improve your concentration and comprehension, which are equally important skills.
Accelerated reading can help college students achieve academic success and give professionals an edge in the workplace, but it's not just for adults or advanced readers. Most of the software starts at the lower grade levels so you can help your children build reading and comprehension skills from the start. The best speed-reading softwareprograms are 7 Speed Reading, AceReader and The Reader’s Edge. To learn more about how to read faster by using these applications, browse our articles on speed-reading software.
Speed-reading software varies by philosophy and goals. Some are simple and based on repetition of a few basic exercises. Others take a more holistic approach, incorporating eye-strengthening exercises and games to improve your thinking skills. Most offer a variety of reading material, and some allow you to import your own text so you can stay interested and keep practicing while you study or work. Below are the most important aspects to look at when choosing accelerated-reading software.
Reading Levels & Exercises
Speed-reading software that caters to a wide range of reading levels and age groups offers more versatility. Even with those that only allow a single user, the software should be able to grow with your skill.
If you are a teacher, run a learning center or have employees you think would benefit from a speed-reading course, look for companies that offer school programs. These are usually bulk discounts or slightly different software that can accommodate a large number of people on one program.
Speed-reading software should contain guided training lessons and base-level testing that evaluates your reading and comprehension levels before you begin the program. Comprehension exercises are important; after all, what good is reading quickly if you don't understand what you just read?
Tests assess the particular skill you are trying to build. For instance, timed tests evaluate your reading speed, and comprehension tests assess how well you retain what you've read. The comprehension tests may be either multiple choice or open-ended questions.
Methods & Material
Look for speed-reading software with grade-appropriate reading material, as well as accounts for individual users to track their own progress. Because different people learn in different ways, the software should also entail different teaching methods that work on a range of skills, from recall and focus to acuity and peripheral vision.
Successful accelerated-reading applications include large libraries of stories, essays and other documents on a variety of subjects that you can use for your exercises and tests. Some applications even allow you to import or copy and paste your own text into the software so that you can practice by reading whatever interests you.
In addition to exercises and testing, speed-reading software should provide useful features to enhance your learning. The best speed-reading applications allow you to set goals, such as the reading speed you want to attain. They also allow more than one person to use the application, with separate password-protected accounts.
Speed-reading software should be easy to install, set up and use. Look for an application that is easy to understand and explains how to perform each exercise and test. The software should also clearly explain why each exercise is used and how it will benefit you.
Any accelerated-reading software program should track your progress and improvement. Some speed-reading applications provide comprehensive progress reports, while others simply show progress charts. Regardless of how it presents the information, the application should track your test scores and words-per-minute reading speed.
If the speed-reading software allows more than one user account, it should also provide administrative reporting controls. These allow admin users such as teachers, employers or parents to access the usage stats and progress reports of other users.
Help & Support
Companies that offer speed-reading software usually provide customer service via telephone or email. They should also provide technical and troubleshooting resources such as user guides, tutorials and FAQs. The best manufacturers offer free software upgrades and a money-back guarantee.
In our fast-paced world, speed-reading can enhance your chances for success in school or at work, plus give you more time to enjoy leisure activities…like reading another book. Speed-reading software is a proven and effective method to help you increase your reading rate while also boosting your comprehension level.