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Improve Your Typing Skills

Updated on December 30, 2011

Poor typing skills are an increasing problem in today's digital world. One of the biggest reasons is because public schools have all but abandoned typing classes that use an honest-to-goodness typewriter. Even if they haven't, today's youth lacks the patience to repeatedly practice typing "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog." I can remember spending hours typing that silly phrase over and over, trying to use as little correction tape as possible. Do any of you even remember pre-scrapbooking correction tape?

Additional Reasons for Poor Typing Skills

  • Technology dumbs down things - Today's world is full of things that make it easy on would-be writers. Features and apps like auto-correct and built-in dictionaries simplify things for even the worst typists. It's like the Internet is moron-proof. For instance, if you search for "wingged" on Google, the result is "Showing results for winged. Search again for wingged."
  • Poor computer hardware - If your computer is outdated, then it will have trouble processing the letters as quickly as you type them. This is a problem because it often makes what you typed look like something pecked out by a monkey who types with his feet. This results in precious hours spent poring over documents to fix any errors caused by the computer itself.
  • Using the mouse instead of shortcut keys - Every time you take your fingers off the keyboard, you're losing typing skills. Instead of using your mouse to click File, Edit, et cetera, try using Control-P for print, Alt-E for edit, Control-S for Save, and so forth. They're really not that hard to learn and differ slightly between programs, especially if you're using Windows-based software.

Effects of Poor Typing Skills

  • Poor health - It's true. Those who slouch and use incorrect arm position while typing are more likely to develop things like back pain and carpal tunnel. Adding insult to injury, severe cases require those afflicted to wear heavy wrist braces making it even more difficult to type. Even worse cases require surgery, requiring patients to avoid all computers during sometimes lengthy recovery times. Yikes!
  • Computer anxiety - Poor typists are less likely to spend a lot of time at the computer. Insecurity about typing skills especially factors into online areas like message board forums. Activities like trolling are often used in pathetic attempt to cover poor typing skills.
  • Poor job performance - More than ever, careers of all types rely on computers in some way, shape, or form. Poor typing skills won't put you at the head of the pack. In fact, it's likely to put you behind the pack, straggling and out of breath waiting to be snapped up by the wolves. Think about it, if you are the boss which employee will you rely on to take care of computer-related tasks -- the one who hunts and pecks with two fingers or the one that uses all fingers on the correct keys with few typos? Yeah, me too!

How to Improve Poor Typing Skills

  • Play typing games - And while you play typing games, have your fingers on the correct keys. The little bumps on your F and J keys? Your index fingers go there. It's a real pain in the butt to learn how to type with your fingers on the correct keys, but once you get the hang of it, the skill is something you won't easily lose. One thing that really helped raise my words per minute, believe it or not, was to start playing a F2P MMORPG. The more I played the game, the better my typing accuracy and speed got, too!
  • Test your typing speed - Typing tests are not only a great way to check your words per minute, but they also reflect how many errors you make while typing out pre-selected paragraphs. The trick is to stop thinking about the content, and whatever you do don't think about how the words are spelled. Even slight distractions can cost you valuable points on your final words per minute score.
  • Correct grammar and spelling - Passive voice? Complex expressions? Redundant phrases? Did you remember what these terms meant one day past graduation from high school? If not, no worries! The internet one again comes to the rescue. Copy your text and paste it into a website like Polish My Writing, click the "check writing" button, and it automatically underlines spelling errors, grammar suggestions, and style suggestions in a color-coded format. This is an easy way to pick up even simple errors made by poor typing skills.

Improving poor typing skills is vital to surviving in today's digital world. Not only will it help you in the ways listed above, but who knows -- it may even help bump up your Hubscore to a higher number!

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