Why Superior Reading and Study Skills Are So Important

Most American students, even those with the greatest native intelligence, perform well below their potential in school. Moreover, their below-par showing continues after they graduate and enter the working world. Too many do poorly in writing, reading and other occupational tasks that require significant intellectual abilities. In fact, more than 95 percent of college-bound high school seniors lack the necessary reading skills to enable them to succeed in their college, business, and...

Mapping Out Your Academic Flight Plan

The fastest, most efficient reading or studying begins with a specific purpose. Conversely, trying to read or study without a goal in mind will make learning more difficult. If you try to take in information at random, without any objectives to guide you, several things will happen You'll become disorganized you'll probably become confused and you'll most likely retain little or any of the material or you'll spend inordinate amounts of time memorizing disconnected bits and pieces of information...

The X Hand Motion

This angular movement is especially useful when you're reading newspapers, magazines, journal articles or other material that's printed in columns. Because the X motion is a little harder to coordinate than ones already described, you'll probably have to practice this one several times before it feels natural. How to execute the motion 1. Don't linger over any word or line with this motion execute it quickly. 2. Start at the top left corner of the page. Move your index finger diagonally down...

Mental Soaring Subsonic Reading

Mental Soaring the term I use for the high-speed, super-efficient assimilation and organization of printed materials involves a wide array of skills that students must develop gradually, over a period of weeks and months. Still, there are some simple, easy-to-master techniques that can increase anyone's reading speed by 50 percent or more overnight. These fundamental principles can, by themselves, revolutionize studying immediately. Furthermore, these basic techniques are a necessary first step...

The Question Mark

This motion, which looks like a question mark, can be used for a fast review of material during the preview or even the overview stage. This movement can easily be executed at a rate of 2 4 seconds per page. With practice, it can be completed at a rate of one second a page. Caution When some people begin to move their hands faster on a page, they may irritate or even blister the tips of their fingers. You can avoid this discomfort by keeping very light contact with the page or executing the...

Multiple Choice Questions

In this type of test, you're asked to select the correct answer from a group of given answers. Many vocabulary tests, for instance, are multiple choice. One major advantage for the student with this kind of test is that the correct answer is always given. As a result, the shrewd student can often find the right response simply by process of elimination. On the other hand, it's just as important to read the directions carefully with multiple-choice tests as with any other type of exam. Too...

The Evelyn Wood Stoty

Evelyn Wood began her career as a counselor for girls at a high school in Salt Lake City. As it happened, none of the youngsters she was trying to help could read well, and good reading seemed the key to getting them back on track in their studies. So Evelyn established a remedial reading program. That program was quite successful, but she wanted to do more. She was especially interested in finding ways that students could read beyond what many experts then regarded as the outer limit of...

How to Fly with Your Hands

One of the major identifying marks of the Evelyn Wood approach to reading has been the use of hand motions. Upon seeing a person's hand or finger sweeping back and forth, up and down on a page in strange or exotic movements, a typical first response may be That's an Evelyn Wood student. As you already know, Evelyn discovered the hand-motion concept as she was brushing dirt off a book that she had tossed down on the ground. In cleaning off each page, she began to read simultaneously at...

First for the General Public

For the first time in any book or publication for the general public, I'm presenting all of the essential techniques involved in the Evelyn Wood reading and learning system. This information is designed to be used by anyone with at least fourth-grade reading skills. Among other things, you will learn How to raise reading speed by at least 50 percent in less than an hour of study and practice, using certain key techniques. How to at least double reading speed, with increased comprehension, after...

Preparing Your Own Mental Computer Printout

What's the main goal of reading and studying school assignments That's an easy question Most students want to be able to remember and use the material they go through so that they can do well on tests and papers. And what's the best way to enable yourself to remember and use these materials But most people don't know how to take notes that really help them remember and use important facts and concepts on tests and in papers. Average students tend to take notes on books and articles in one of...

How to Fine Tune Your Hidden Voice

Subvocal linear reading is clearly an important part of your repertoire of reading skills. Becoming proficient in this slower-paced technique will increase your reading speed far beyond its present rate and is an essential first step in Mentally Soaring with visual-vertical reading. But how exactly do you fine-tune this skill First, it's important to evaluate accurately, in hard, clear terms, just how fast you can expect to read using the subvocal linear approach. Second, you must learn to...

Pushing Beyond Your Speed Limit

The first rule for those who want to increase their reading rate to the maximum possible speed is practice. No one, not even our top instructors, can hope to maintain the highest levels of visual-vertical reading without regular workouts. For example, Carol Romaniszak admits that her reading rate falls to 1,000 1,200 words per minute, with 80 percent comprehension, when she's not in training. On the other hand, when she is in training, she works regularly at speeds of 2,000-3,000 words per...

Diagram of the X Hand Motion

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Your Hidden Voice

Everyone's reading except for those expert in the special Evelyn Wood learning skills involves two dominant characteristics 1. The reading is accompanied by a hidden voice, a tendency to pronounce the printed words silently or even to speak them in a barely audible murmur. 2. The reading is executed from left to right across the page, line by line, until the page is finished. Then, the student moves through subsequent pages using the same line-by-line approach. Reading that displays these...

Other Ways to Fly with Your Hands

These six motions represent the basic ways to use hand motions to pace your reading. But there are also many others that you may find useful. Here are some of the possibilities The horseshoe. Many of our top readers have found a horseshoe-shaped motion to be particularly helpful for the extremely fast overviewing phases of study. Acquiring its name from the horseshoe-shaped pattern that the hand traces, this movement works like this 1. Using your left hand as a pacer, you begin with the left...

Whats a Recall Pattern

At the Evelyn Wood program, we prefer to call our lesson notes recall patterns, because their main function is to enable you to organize and then draw easily and efficiently on the material you've taken in during study sessions. The ability to recall is the ability to write or relate orally, in your own words, information that you've gained from what you've read. By this definition, then, recalling is directly tied into the process of remembering. The student who has a good memory, along with...

True False Questions

As you read the instructions, be especially alert in determining where you're supposed to put your X or check. Does it go next to the true or the false item 2. Ask before you begin the test whether or not you're penalized for wrong answers i.e., are wrong answers subtracted from the right ones . If you're not penalized, you should feel free to guess. If you are penalized, guessing should be severely limited. 3. Mark statements true only if they are absolutely true unless your instructions...

The Underlining Hand Motion

You've already learned this motion in chapter two, and I hope you're using it now as you read this part of the text. To refresh your memory, here's an explanation of how the underlining motion works, with an illustrative diagram. Remember, this hand motion is most appropriate for the slower, subvocal linear reading. How to execute the motion 1. Place the palm of your hand on the page, with your thumb close to or tucked under the palm. Note Throughout these explanations, assume that right-handed...

Essay Tests

Essay questions often strike the greatest dread in the hearts of students. Some fear that they don't write well enough to ace this kind of test. Others are afraid because essay tests are so open-ended I never feel sure I have the right answer or approach. But students who have prepared properly have little to fear so long as they tackle these questions systematically. Here is a basic plan Step 1. Know and identify the key action or clue words that characterize essay tests. When you see one of...

Your Own Mental Computer Printout Model Slash and Linear Recall Patterns

Thematic materials almost any plot- or idea-centered material following a progressive or growth pattern. Thematic materials almost any plot- or idea-centered material following a progressive or growth pattern. Logical pattern of writing. Many text-and casebooks. Logical pattern of writing. Many text-and casebooks. REMEMBER EVERYTHING YOU READ Model Radial Recall Patterns Material with one or two main ideas or centers of attention. Material with one or two main ideas or centers of attention....

The S Hand Motion

This motion can be used in a number of ways. Some people like to use a broad, sweeping, lazy S motion during the previewing phase, when they're going through a book at a rate of about 2-4 seconds per page. Many people also use a tighter version of this movement when they're reading at supersonic speed. 1. Place your palm on the page, with the thumb close to or tucked under the palm. 2. Your fingers should be relaxed and spread slightly, with the hand lying relatively flat on the page. 3. Begin...

Supersonic Case Study

Before he discovered the Evelyn Wood method, our instructor Dan Warner was a different person. As an English major in college, he avoided classes which required term papers. He couldn't take all the extra reading he knew would be required before he sat down to write. Even if only four or five extra books were necessary, I actually felt physically sick when I'd sit down to read the first book, he recalled. I also knew I'd fall asleep trying to read. But after he took the Evelyn Wood course, his...

The Foundations of Layered Reading

To understand how the Multiple Reading Process, or layering technique, works, it's important to recognize four basic principles on which this concept is based Principle 1 You must learn to see and accept words and phrases out of their normal expectancy order. To illustrate, suppose you divide this page in half, drawing a vertical line from top to bottom. Then, assume that you subdivide it crosswise. Imagine a series of about four or five parallel horizontal lines across the page, from the top...

How a Slash Recall Can Organize a Shopping List

Cottage Cheese Bananas Steel Wool Laundry Soap Peaches Cold Cuis lt Shrimp Hamburger Here's another slash recall pattern, which has been a particularly helpful model for law students to use when they're taking notes on their cases. Many of the best law students like to fit all their notes on a case on a single page. And of course, they want the material to be organized as efficiently as possible. Unfortunately, though, not every judge who writes an opinion is well organized or logical in...

Beyond the Subvocal Barrier

After a student moves through the subvocal speed barrier of about 800-900 words per minute, he usually hits a range of reading that can best be described as rough. Specifically, when the student's rate varies between about 900 and 1,200 words per minute, there's a tendency to shift back and forth between subvocal linear reading and visual-vertical reading. As the pace moves up toward and above 1,200 words per minute, however, the style of reading becomes more consistently visual-vertical. But...

How Richard Learned to Soar

Consider what happened to Richard, a high school senior who took one of our three-week Evelyn Wood reading courses. He had been progressing quite well and had increased his reading speed from just under 300 words per minute to just over 1,000, according to the most recent test he had been given. Many of our students end up reading faster than this, however, and Richard's fast-developing skills suggested that he might increase his speed significantly if he kept practicing. His instructor...

How to Take Lecture Notes

Slash Recall Pattern Notes Taking

Most students at one time or another fantasize about either using a tape recorder or shorthand to capture every word a lecturer says. But in fact, both of these fantasies are unrealistic. In the first place, if you turn on a tape recorder with the intention of listening to the lecture again before the exam, you'll in effect have to double your lecture time. You'll not only spend twenty-five to thirty hours or more in the classroom you'll also have to spend another twenty-five to thirty hours...

Its for Every Student Regardless of

An extremely conscientious girl, twelve-year-old Sandra found she was spending most of her evenings on schoolwork. She was always studying, preparing reports, and reading books assigned to her. Furthermore, she was losing far too much sleep as she tried to keep up with her workload. We had little or no family time together, her mother recalled. But then, Sandra learned and began to apply to her work the same principles you'll find in this book. Just a few weeks later,...

Mental Soaring The Secret to Success

What does it take to be a superior student The most important secret to being a contender for the top of the class has always been effective reading and that means reading that involves 1. high-speed assimilation and comprehension of all sorts of subject matter and 2. the ability to recall that subject matter later during testing. The superior student, then, is one who first of all can read assigned books and handouts quickly and understand thoroughly what has been read. Second, he is able to...

Program

EXECUTIVE VICE-PRESIDENT OF ENCYCLOPAEDIA BRITANNICA, INC I'm especially grateful to the following people Evelyn Wood, who pushed through the knowledge frontier and in the process helped millions of people recognize their own achievement potential. Dan Warner, for his personal commitment to the Evelyn Wood method over the past two decades, and for his contributions to the many vignettes throughout the book. William Proctor, who has spent countless hours assisting the author with field...