Computers have replaced typewriters, but two-finger,hunt-and-peck typing can never replace touch typing of a trained professional.
A recent report by Robert Johnson in Boston Globe highlights decline of typing skills. Human resource managers are finding it surprisingly difficult to recruit candidates with most basic of all office skills. According to Johnson, “the rapid-fire 100-word-per-minute applicant has virtually disappeared. Today, a mere 40 words per minute is enough to gain many administrative jobs.”
Paradoxically, as computers are being used by more and more people, it has become apparent that typing is not just a skill required by typist anymore. Strong typing skills are vital when conducting a thorough web search, entering data into a spreadsheet or using any other computer program. Ubiquitous email means that merely doubling your typing speed could save hours each week! Yet many of us persist with two-finger, hunt-and-peck typing method.
How did we end up in such a mess? When people first begin to use computers, many do not take time to learn how to type correctly. Using keyboard may seem to be simple, when compared with learning complex business software. People do not realize that by learning how to type properly, their use of software will be more effective and their time spent on a computer will be more productive.
Attitudes in school teaching have also had an impact. Typing skills were once taught in most secondary schools. Johnson notes that these low-tech classes consisted of little more than a teacher with a wind-up clock and rows of typewriters. The textbook showed keyboard and specified which fingers should strike various letters and numbers in order to quickly copy business documents such as invoices and memos. But most schools phased-out typing class as demand for broader computer instruction increased.
Of course, many people manage to get by with two-finger, seek-and-tap method. But getting by is all it is. By learning to touch-type, you step into a new realm of computer experience. No longer do you need to fret over physical process of keying in information, whether it is a quick response to an instant message or a 30-page report. Instead, as a touch-typist you are free to concentrate on what you are writing, while your fingers do “thinking” about which keys to hit.
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If you are unable to open e-mail account without mistyping your password at least once or you’re stuck at 20 words per minute, there are a several ways to improve. First, check out your current performance by taking a typing test. You will find a free typing test on UK Training News website. If you can manage 90-100 words per minute then relax; otherwise read on.