What does keyboarding have to do with writing skills?

If you take the time to learn which finger goes on which key and develop speed and accuracy with the correct technique, you can think directly and easily onto the computer. This means you can shift your attention:
  • away from finding the right key
  • towards actually reading and editing as you write.

Research also shows that learning correct keyboard technique improves spelling:
  • the keyboarding exercises strengthen the link between the brain and the correct finger for the letter
  • this reinforces and revises the sound-letter patterns that support spelling
  • good copy typists are usually excellent team members in spelling quizzes!

What speed and accuracy should you aim for?

  • Learning to type properly only takes 10-15 minutes each day to achieve great improvements in speed and accuracy within a few weeks.
  • Once you learn the skills, just like riding a bike or playing the piano, these skills stay with you for the rest of your life. Keyboarding is a very valuable skill for uni studies and for employment.
  • One job search site advises that:" in most workplaces today, people are doing more work than ever because of less staff. You need to be able to work quickly and accurately. And, with computers rather than electric typewriters, people's typing speeds have increased simply as a function of the faster response of the keyboard and the ease of correcting a mistake." (http://monster.prospero.com)//
  • How do the following statistics compare with your own current speed and accuracy?
    • If you type less than 30wpm with less than 80% accuracy, you really just don't type at all.
    • 45 wpm with less than 80% accuracy is at the bottom of the scale. You may say you can type, but you're not skilled enough even for general clerical work.
    • 60 wpm with 90+% accuracy is the minimum for someone who has typing as a job function. That's adept, but not expert.
    • 75 wpm with 95+% accuracy is the minimum for someone who is doing lots of correspondence or report-writing. That's proficient.
    • 90 wpm with almost 100% accuracy is spectacular. That's what employment agencies call expert.
    • Most job-application tests only allow up to 3 errors for a 5 minute test and 5 errors for a 10 minute test, with spell-checker disabled for the test.
    • The ratio of errors to the total number of words typed is used to determine accuracy, which is just as important as speed to potential employers.
    • In many businesses, delays in getting out reports and sending out letters and other documents or spelling errors can mean losing a sale, project contract or client because this reflects on the professionalism of the business. Being able to quickly edit and format, use search-and-replace functions, create tables, columns and mail-merged documents are also key elements in business; being able to type without effort gives you more time to concentrate on these aspects of word-processing .

Where can you find some useful resources?
  • There are lots of websites with online typing lessons and tests, and so try them out. Practice makes perfect. You could at least double your input speed and accuracy, if you persevere. Here are some sites that are worth looking at: