/ I want to learn to touch type ...any suggestions

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jugpuller - on 13 Dec 2013

I have been a painfully slow 2 finger typist for too long.

Any suggestions from anyone who gained the skills, classes ? online courses ? Anything else ?

All suggestions are welcome !
Post edited at 15:27
Mark Collins - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

I'm not a brilliant touch typest, but am a lot better than 2 fingers these days. Discipline, force yourself to type by looking at the screen and feeling for the keys; you already know where they are.
kean - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

thequickbrownfoxjumpedovertherlazydog...ad nauseum?

I just forced myself to learn cos I had to type for work...found out where the "home" keys were, which fingers governed which letters and then just got down to it...was much quicker to learn than I'd expected...
themuppet - on 13 Dec 2013
csw on 13 Dec 2013
Gordon Stainforth - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

You just need to have some kind of cardboard cover that attaches to the back of the keyboard, so that you can't see your hands. It's hard work, but well worth learning the proper fingering. And of course you need a fingering chart. There comes a magic moment (for me it was after about 5 years, be warned, though I was probably a bit slow), when you suddenly find yourself typing, looking at what you're writing without looking at or thinking about your hands at all. i.e. direct thought to paper, or direct thought to screen. While I've been writing this I've just been watching the words appearing on the screen, completely unaware of my hands.
stewc - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

I have found typingclub.com to be quite good, it takes you through where each finger should be and builds up your speed. Just needs lots of practice!
Neil Williams - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

All I have done is used computers for years and eventually started doing it! I probably don't follow all the recommendations but am pretty quick.

Neil
yorkshireman - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

> I have been a painfully slow 2 finger typist for too long.

> Any suggestions from anyone who gained the skills, classes ? online courses ? Anything else ?

> All suggestions are welcome !

Do you know where the keys are without looking?

The rest is just trial and error.

I can type fast but never 'learned to type' - 30 years ago I got a rubber keyed ZX Spectrum for Xmas and learned the qwerty layout from there. The rest just came naturally over time.

There will be software out there you can use to learn in a more formal way. I'm probably terrible with technique but it gets the job done.

Don't be afraid to make mistakes. As has been said, look at the screen and get used to correcting text on the fly - its much quicker than trying to get it 100% correct first time around.
Gordon Stainforth - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

I think nowadays it's much easier to learn fast because the keyboards are just so much easier to use. When I started in c.1971 it was all manual typewriters, which were desperately difficult by modern standards - the hands had to move much more dramatically and vigorously, a bit like playing a continual loud staccato piece on a piano. Now it's really pianissimo what you have to do with your hands.
willworkforfoodjnr - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

I used http://www.typeonline.co.uk/

I'd been working with computers for 6 years before this and I found that learning to touch type effectively made a huge difference. It also meant that when I started getting rsi pains that I could get a proper ergonomic split keyboard which cured me in days.

kathrync - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:

> All I have done is used computers for years and eventually started doing it! I probably don't follow all the recommendations but am pretty quick.

> Neil

Ditto. Well, actually it was probably writing my PhD thesis that sorted me out, but as you say, I am entirely self-taught and I'm pretty sure I don't touch-type correctly. I can, however, type quickly and without looking at what my hands are doing.
Tim Chappell - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:
Like Kathryn and Neil, I never learned to touch-type. It just happened. Writing about 10 books and about 100 articles will do that to you.

These days I type far faster than I can write with my hand, to the extent that if I'm taking notes in a meeting I have much more chance of keeping up if I type; my handwriting is all to pot these days, too.

I spend so much of my working life typing that practice is completely superfluous. But if I was going to practise to improve my typing, here's what I'd do: I'd get a reading-frame and put on it my favourite novel (Bleak House or War And Peace, not sure which), next to the laptop. Then I'd spend ten minutes a day copying it out, timed and against the clock. Every time you go up another hundred words per ten minutes, you reward yourself with a jelly-baby.
Post edited at 16:42
Tim Chappell - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

PS Interesting question: how many words can I type in a minute? I might actually get Bleak House off the shelf and try that, this evening after work.
Durbs on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

It's pretty easy (and surprisingly quick depending how often you type) to be learn to touch type.

Whether you want to learn correct finger positions is up to you - i personally don't see the need. I don't think I do it right, but can still type almost at dictation speed.
ThunderCat - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to Tim Chappell:

I recall reading (and this might not be true at all), but the layout of the qwerty keyboard isn't actually the best key layout for aiding speed.

However because original keyboards were mechanical devices, typing too quickly could jam the mechanism...so the qwerty layout is a deliberate attempt to slow one's typing speed down to avoid such jams (which in effect increased typing speed)

Mountain Lass - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

If you can find a copy The Typing of the Dead is pretty fun:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Typing_of_the_Dead

ml
seankenny - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

Get a typing programme, follow it and practise lots. You'll end up faster, quicker.
Tall Clare - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:
I sort of taught myself at around thirteen with a manual typewriter and a Pitman Teach Yourself Typing book but, somewhat embarrassingly, got up to full speed a few years ago whilst typing endless reams of nonsense on - yes - UKC.
Post edited at 16:55
lynda - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

I did a GCSE in typewriting in school and I have to say that it's been the most useful qualification that I did during my school years.

I've definitely gotten better over the years (job entails writing/typing) and like Tim, prefer typing to writing for speed and convenience, which I never thought would happen when I first learned to type.
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ebygomm - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

I used Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing to learn to type to learn when I was school aged. It is one of the single most useful things I've ever learnt to do.
Carolyn - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to kathrync:

> Ditto. Well, actually it was probably writing my PhD thesis that sorted me out, but as you say, I am entirely self-taught and I'm pretty sure I don't touch-type correctly. I can, however, type quickly and without looking at what my hands are doing.

Same here - it was typing up my PhD thesis that got me touch typing, probably not "correctly", but then that's probably not so important with a modern keyboard.
tlm - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to Tim Chappell:

> PS Interesting question: how many words can I type in a minute? I might actually get Bleak House off the shelf and try that, this evening after work.

No need - you can test yourself here:

http://www.typeonline.co.uk/typingspeed.php

I learned using a typing tutor and am very glad that I did. It makes my life so much easier!
jonathan shepherd - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller: I bought a computer in 2000 which came with a typing tutor cd so I just spent half an hour with it each night for about a month to six weeks and seemed to pick it up fairly quickly. The one I used gave you increasingly difficult exercises to follow on screen and i just stuck with each one until I could do it smoothly and quickly.

Bimble on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to tlm:

78wpm, 2 mistakes. Now must get faster...
altirando - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller: I actually learned to touch type in my teens, I had ideas of being a journalist. Someone reminded me the other day we learned on blank keyboards. I think I managed about 45wpm typing, 120wpm shorthand. Looking back, one of the most useful skills I gained at school!

tlm - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to TryfAndy:

That is fast! I only got 45 wpm with 2 mistakes... the thing that took the longest was clicking on the start and stop buttons...
Tall Clare - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to lynda:

>

> I've definitely gotten better over the years (job entails writing/typing) and like Tim, prefer typing to writing for speed and convenience, which I never thought would happen when I first learned to type.

I type a lot faster than I can write nowadays, but I tend to find that writing by hand still helps me to think more carefully.

Dave Perry - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

I was taught to touch type as a radio operator in the RN. Like many Its something I value even more now we've all got computers and the like.

I've seen the Mavis Beacon software and you should manage with that. But...... it needs lots of discipline and patience to use the correct fingers for the correct keys when you are learning and you might find it too much of a temptation to look at the keyboard all the time.

If you have a spare keyboard you could try to tipex out or perhaps put small bits of tape over each key.

A better way is to blank out the keys each finger uses as you learn them. So for example the keys you normally use with your right forefinger are y,u,h,j,b,n,. Once you have those memorised and can use them and know where they are instinctively blank them out, then go on to learn another finger and do the same for that. If you use different colours for different fingers it makes a lot of difference too when you're learning. You only need four colours as they can be used for left and right hands similarly - so green or whatever, will do for little finger on each hand.

Once you've got going stick with it. Half and hours practice each day and within a few weeks you should be able to notice your speed increasing considerably.

Good luck!
altirando - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to tlm: But of course this was on an oldfashioned, nonelectric typewriter.....

Clarence - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to ebygomm:

> I used Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing to learn to type to learn when I was school aged. It is one of the single most useful things I've ever learnt to do.

Me too, Mavis Beacon was awesome and it forced me to use the shift keys properly, not doing the guitarists finger span.
Welsh Kate - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

I learned to touch type at school. It is probably the single-most valuable skill I was ever taught in school. I now freak out my colleagues by holding an entirely coherent conversation and maintaining eye contact with them whilst at the same time typing at high speed on my computer :-)
digby - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to Clarence:
> Me too, Mavis Beacon was awesome and it forced me to use the shift keys properly, not doing the guitarists finger span.

Another endorsement for Mavis Beacon. I found it very quick and easy to pick up touch typing after years of getting dizzy trying to watch my fingers. Surprisingly so. Though I can't type very fast, I don't have to look except for more esoteric key combinations.
Post edited at 08:44
LJC - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

+1 for Typing of the Dead. Made learning to type aged 16 quite good fun, but who knows if you'll be able to find a copy, let alone run it on a modern windows system (I think it was for win98 back in the day).
dutybooty - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

I learnt to type from a young age as I've always done all my work on a laptop/computer (I can't write).

For quite a while I was just two finger typing, but then it was suggested to me to copy out a book. Correctly. I picked a book about 100 pages long, by the end of it was typing about 120WPM...still do.
tattoo2005 - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:
I have been a secretary for 23 years and type at about 95 wpm. You need to learn where the "home" keys are; these are A,S, D and F the four fingers of your left hand should be positioned on these at all times, and J, K, L and ; which are the "home" keys for your right hand. Its all about learning the keys around the home keys and moving your fingers to these keys whilst keeping your other fingers hovering around the home keys. It is easy, it just sounds complicated, take a photo of your keyboard, photocopy it and use that as a guide for your fingers!!! I'm sorry if this sounds longwinded but I was trying to break it down for you lol!
Post edited at 17:24
altirando - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to tattoo2005: Yes, umpteen years ago when I learned to type on
a blank keyboard, eight fingers on the home keys was always the starter position and I automatically put my fingers in that position now when I start typing on a computer keyboard.

ByEek - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to jugpuller:

Become a UKC addict and post at least 500+ posts a week. You will soon become adept at touch typing.
tattoo2005 - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to altirando:

Aye its easy when you know how lol!
In reply to jugpuller:

I taight myselg - pieve of pidd

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