The Foxy Armadillos
May 2018 by V. R. Duin


Roll, 'Dillos, roll.
Speed up our goal.
Slow takes a toll!

Learning about the different reading methods may help people understand how speed reading hurts reading comprehension and how deep reading helps learning.

How Speed Reading Hurts Reading Comprehension: Too many places to go, too many things to do and too little time create a reason to use different reading methods. The speed reading method quickly gets readers through basic information. Much of this information does not need to be learned for work, school and participation in society. Speed reading delivers many advantages and meets most expectations for speed in the digital era. There is no time for readers to waste on the comprehension of text that may not be useful. Most people careen through their days with few breaks, and no time to waste when a glance shows text to be of no interest or relevance. This expectation for speed may extend to all visual materials and sounds that enter human space in the digital era, including books, audio books, videos and all forms of Web content.

Different reading applications call for different reading methods. Sifting through news headlines, social media posts or surfing the Web, may not require deep reading. Deep reading helps learning and reading comprehension. During brief snippets of available time, speed reading helps readers screen online and print content for information of interest. Speed readers rarely linger or repeat texts to cement understanding. Speed readers often skip over content that is not of interest to them. However, speed reading hurts comprehension. Therefore, it may not be useful for complex reading applications that require study or deep introspection. People are forgetting how deep reading helps learning.

Technological advances have led to different reading methods. Computerized speed reading applications are based on screen presentations that may not accelerate book reading. People, who are extremely comfortable with the skimming of online content may not realize how deep reading helps learning. These speed readers may become annoyed with the slower pace of reading applications that require study or full reading comprehension. To accommodate this speed reading style, writers and educators must be aware of the online formats used on the Web. Speed readers may be attracted by the introduction of the familiar formats of modern technology into printed materials.

Different reading methods call for different writing formats. Today's speed reading Web surfers may expect defined text areas for titles, headings, paragraphs and the use of different fonts, sizes, styles, borders and colors to highlight information of importance. Online content should be designed so people can cover greater material at greater speed without a total sacrifice of reading comprehension. Speed reading hurts comprehension for many reading applications that require deep reading for learning. Writers, educators and entrepreneurs must weigh all content against the trending advantages and expectations for tech speed in world communications. To do otherwise with any reading applications or materials may risk alienating prospective readers, clients or customers.

How Deep Reading Helps Learning: People are seeking ideas that leap at them, not ones that crawl mindlessly across space and time. Moore's “law” predicted that processor power would double every two years. This expectation for speed has held true for over 50 years. As a result, consumers have come to expect faster tech speed and greater automation of personal computers, cellphones and other tech-driven vehicles, appliances and devices. Different reading methods are evolving into new information forms. Voice and virtual reality applications now interact with users in many new ways.

Of the different reading methods, speed reading seems to be preferred in the digital age. Nobody likes reading applications that are tedious, slow or that try to push unwanted audio, video or digital programs into personal space. Few modern readers will pause to repeat the reading reading of convoluted texts. Reading comprehension may be cast aside for the sake of speed. Slow content of any nature may repel readers. Moreover, human reading activities are physically limited by eye movement and cognitive ability. Hence, devices driven by the spoken word are surging. Talking is faster than reading for many individuals, today. Fewer people care to learn how deep reading helps learning.

In this day of rapid search, people may not care to know how speed reading hurts reading comprehension. They may not care to learn how deep reading helps learning. Search engines do a lot of the work for them. Machines are programmed to read and index content, quickly and fully. Unlike machines, human readers do not come programmed with all of the language skills and information needed for perfect speed reading. Speed reading may reduce reading comprehension, because people are not machines. Readers should be pleased to learn the average reading speed provides a faster gain in knowledge than can be accomplished through hearing that same information. Therefore, reading may still matter to learning new information in the voice-driven age.

How Speed Reading Hurts Reading Comprehension

  • Speed Reading Reading Rates says:

    Modern speed reading expectations may be frustrated when long and confusing content fails to maintain human attention, or when browsers react to repetitiveness by triggering an alert that stops the script.

  • Reading Comprehension Reading Rates says:

    Reading comprehension may be frustrated when readers quickly leave content that offers no immediate information or structure against which to reflect and build strength.

    • Reading ApplicationsReading Rates says:

      Most speed reading applications require practice to build vocabulary and reduce pauses to look up words.