What is Average Reading Speed? – Speed Reading Records n’ Statistics

An average adult reading speed stands at 239 words per minute (wpm); there are speed reading techniques that claim to unlock reading rates over 700 or even above 1,000 wpm[^1^]. In this article, we will dive into the fascinating world of speed reading, exploring its levels, records, etc.

Speed Reading Records

While most of the population remains at the normal reading rate of 200-350 wpm, some individuals have reported reading skills that go way beyond the average human’s capabilities[^1^].

Here are some notable speed reading records:

  • Annie Jones, a six-time World Speed Reading Champion, is able to read 4,700 wpm with 67% comprehension[^1^].
  • Howard Berg set the Guinness World Record in speed reading in 1990, allegedly reading 25,000 words per minute (or 80 pages per minute) with 100% comprehension. However, Guinness no longer recognizes any speed reading records[^1^].
  • Maria Teresa Calderon claims to have the ability to read 80,000 wpm with 100% comprehension, although this claim has never been officially confirmed[^1^].
  • Bill Gates is reported to read 150 pages per hour, which translates to approximately 625 wpm with 90% comprehension[^1^].
  • John F. Kennedy was able to read 1,500 wpm, as reported by various sources[^1^].
  • Another former president of the USA, Jimmy Carter, allegedly could read at 2,000 wpm with 95% comprehension[^1^].
  • Evelyn Wood, an American teacher who popularized speed reading, claimed she could read 2,700 words per minute[^1^].
  1. The average reading speed for adults is approximately 200 to 250 words per minute (wpm).
  2. College students tend to read at a slightly faster pace, averaging around 300 wpm.
  3. Skilled speed readers can achieve reading rates of over 500 wpm, with some exceptional individuals reaching speeds of 1,000 wpm or more.
  4. Public speakers typically speak at a rate of around 160 words per minute, while auctioneers can reach speeds of up to 400 wpm.
  5. Dyslexic or ADD students who improve their reading speed often develop a greater interest in reading and experience improved focus and comprehension.
  6. Reading speed and comprehension are closely linked, with optimal comprehension typically occurring at rates between 200 and 400 wpm.
  7. Skimming, a technique where readers visually search for key information, can be useful for quickly getting an overview of a text but may reduce comprehension levels when detailed information is required.
  8. Meta guiding, a speed reading method that involves using a pointer to follow the eye’s path, can reduce regressions and subvocalization, resulting in faster reading times.
  9. Rapid Serial Visual Presentation (RSVP) is a popular method used in speed reading apps, but studies have shown that comprehension levels may decrease significantly when reading rates exceed 500 wpm.
  10. Enjoyable practice, the nature of the material being read, reader motivation, mental and physical health, and the medium of reading all influence reading speed.

About Author

I'm Shehraj Singh, I started the eReader.blog to help people learn more about eReader specifically Amazon Kindle, and help them fix any issues they may have.

I have a lot of experience with Kindle, and I want to share my knowledge with you so that you can make the most out of your device.

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