Stationery supplier Staples has created an application that aims to put your reading speed to the test.
Staples has developed a timed test which gives you a page to read, followed by a few questions.
The aim is to see how fast you can read – and how you compare to the national average.
Once you have found your grade, the program will tell you how well you compare to others, from high school students to college professors, or to the speed reading record – a staggering 4,700 words a minute.
The average speed for adults is 300 words a minute, which means an average reader could rattle through War and Peace – which has about 560,000 words in its English translation – in about 11,866 minutes.
How we read has changed over the years, with experts in particular noting how the internet is changing how we read materials.
Skimming – where your eye glances over blocks of writing for keywords – has become a lot more ingrained among heavy internet users, who are used to jumping around between different pages as they search for certain words.
Skimming normally provides a reading rate of 700 words per minute, and leads to lower comprehension rates – but it has the advantage of allowing you to go through huge amounts of text to find the information you are after.
The Staples test stops you doing this though – a quick multiple choice questionnaire directly after the speed reading makes sure you have taken in the information.
Although, as the test is purely for fun, there is nothing to stop you having a second go a few moments later.