In GAMSAT, time management is a crucial factor. Hence, effective speed reading is vital for a quick understanding of the information provided to you in the question paper. In addition, it is a key instrument that helps you to pick out only the most relevant information from a number of sentences. Speed reading ensures that you discriminate between the relevant and the irrelevant text and questions that are present in the paper. Effective speed reading is important because it reduces the total time spent answering each question. It will also ensure that you complete questions and sections that you are comfortable with on time in order to use any spare time on parts that are new to you in the paper.
The insight you need to have for speed reading is to know what information you need to gather from the passage before you start reading it. For this it is advised to look at the questions that follow at the end of the passage. If you only want an outline of what the passage discusses then you need to go through the passage quickly and extract only the essential facts. If you need to know the detail of the passage to answer the questions then you might have to read slowly to take in as much as possible from it.
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Speed reading involves reading words as a single block.As children, we learn to read letter-by-letter or word-by-word but that changes gradually as we grow up and have the sea of knowledge before us to read and understand. Look at this sentence: ” W hpe yu d wll n yr GAMSAT“, notice how it still makes sense with the missing letters. That’s because your brain fills in the blanks automatically, again a prerequisite for speeding up your reading. You will notice as you read this guide that your eyes are possibly taking in a fixed block of words and then moving on to the next block.Now, if you can only make an effort to expand this block and take in more words at a time without losing the meaning of what you are reading you will read faster. By being able to read and assimilate the maximum amount of information this way, you will gain a competitive advantage over your fellow aspirants who are probably taking in smaller blocks of words and skipping back to the ones read earlier, thus losing the flow of reading.
A quarter of a second is the least time you need to read a block of words. But if you try hard enough you can reduce the time your eyes spend on a block before moving on to the next. This saves a lot of reading time, but you will be able to understand the conveyed meaning only if you have considerable experience in such fast reading. Our advice therefore is for you to begin practicing speed reading well before you sit for GAMSAT so that on the day of the test you do not end up missing word meanings.
Using a pointer to read will reduce your tendency of skipping back to the previous block of words. It is a good idea to use the tip of a pencil as a pointer below the line you are reading so that your eye follows the tip of the pencil resulting in a smoother flow of reading. How fast you will actually read will depend on how fast you move the pointer in this case.