Chart of Topics
1. Basic Operations and Concepts
By the End of Grade 7-4) Students know how to use proper keyboarding posture, hand and finger positions, and touch-typing techniques to improve accuracy, speed, and general efficiency in computer operation.
Student Rubric: Click Here
During the next 18 weeks, you will be learning an exciting new method of keyboarding. This method involves direct instruction from the teacher and lots of initial practice. We will be learning the proper technique to improve efficiency and accuracy. Your child will learn about proper posture, which is important in preventing future computer related fatigue and chronic problems. Proper keyboarding will be expected and reinforced in all computer use after students have mastered the keyboarding program.
Typing is the process of inputting text into a device, such as a typewriter, computer, or a calculator, by pressing keys on a keyboard. It can be distinguished from other means of input, such as the use of pointing devices like the computer mouse, and text input via speech recognition.
User interface features such as spell checker, autocomplete and autoreplace serve to facilitate and speed up typing and to prevent or correct errors the typist may make.
The basic technique involves the use of the wiener method, where the typist keeps his/her wrists up, rather than resting them on a desk or keyboard as this can cause carpal tunnel syndrome. The typist is to place his/her feet flat on the floor in front of him/her, keeping his/her elbows close to his/her sides with his/her forearms slanted slightly upward to the keyboard. The typist keeps his/her eyes on the source copy at all times, a technique known as touch typing. This stands in contrast to hunt and peck typing.
Bad Habit: Hunt and Peck and Other Habits
Hunt and peck (or two-fingered typing) is a common form oftyping, in which the typist must find and press each key individually. This is almost always considerably slower than touch typing. Instead of relying on the memorized position of keys, the typist must find each key by sight.
Use of this method also prevents the typist from being able to see what has been typed without glancing away from the keys. Although good accuracy may be achieved, any typing errors that are made may not be noticed immediately, if at all.
There are many idiosyncratic typing styles in between "hunt and peck" and touch typing; for example, many people will type blindly, but use only two to five fingers, and not always in a systematic fashion. Many motion pictures often show characters, even ones who are intended as computer literate, typing in this manner; presumably to allow time for the audience to read what is being typed on screen or as a crude way of implying that some sort of skill or concentration is involved in whatever task is being done by computer
Please try to focus on completing your keyboarding
homework and practice using proper techinique.
It is not necessary to have a computer for
you to practice proper keyboarding.
Practice could be as simple as having
reviewing your keyboard while in the car as you are running
errands or at the table while you are cooking dinner, using an old
typewriter, or using your computer, of course. Please use proper
fingering and posture, and continue to develop prop technique at home.
If you notice that you are not improving, please see me for extra
Developing good technique, finger placement, positioning and movement is the first step toward developing effective typing skills. Learning to type involves control of hand and fingers (motor learning, kinesthesia and fine motor
You need to learn correct placement of fingers and how to move your fingers and position your hands. These are the basic skills needed for touch typing which is the skill of pressing the keys accurately without looking at the keys.
Traditional typing training since the days of the typewriter have presented the 'home row' touch typing approach. This has worked well for some and yet many still find typing to be a frustrating, one or few finger hunt and peck type of exercise. We all need to use keyboards now, whether at home, school or work, and efficient typing is becoming more of an essential skill we need to be developing.
Here, we present a unique approach to typing training based on 'how your hands work', as well as providing comprehensive information and resources all aimed at providing you with the best environment for developing typing skills to make you more effective and competitive in your work or school environment.
Components of good typing technique:
Hand Function Training Approach
We present a supplemental, different approach to training efficient touch typing skills on a regular qwerty keyboard. This approach is based on 'how your hand works'! It is a fine motor training approach, training specific movements of the fingers, and is grounded in the principles of hand function. If you have a Custom Typing Training account, you can take a look at our exercises and training modules, which take into account differences in function of the radial and ulnar fingers. You will learn to type the easy words and become familiar with the easy keys first, and then go onto the more difficult keys to type. In addition to the 'easy and hard' keys approach, some familiar 'home - top - bottom row' exercises are provided.
Training should be based on 'how' your hand works, and the
training of small muscle movement / motor learning!
Ergonomics & Positioning
The positioning of your body as well as the physical layout of the work environment and equipment will significantly impact your overall efficiency of typing, your productivity and ultimately your long term health. Much emphasis has been placed in recent years, on the types of repetitive strain injuries and problems caused by poor working posture and mechanics. This has arisen partly due to the increasingly static nature of work being performed in the computer and information age. Many more people are spending longer hours sitting at a computer, in front of a screen and working with keyboards, mice and other input devices. The longer we sit in the same positions and perform the same movements over and over again for an extended period of time, the more susceptible we are to overuse injuries, strains and reduced work performance.
Brief information about the importance of ergonomics and positioning is included here since it has such an important influence on typing skills.
entire section of this tutorial web site is dedicated to ergonomics,
with specific detail being given to practical information, suggestions
and alternatives. Click
here to go to the
Ergonomics section of this web site.
Movement vs. Stability
Good typing technique depends on a balance between movement and stability of the fingers, hands, arms, body, AND head / eyes! This is an extremely important point which is often overlooked in the process of training typing skills.
Movement: should occur primarily at the finger joints, with some forward and backward movement of the hands to reach for keys.
Stability: your whole body should be seated and supported in the
most stable position possible, with your feet rested securely on the
floor, forearms supported on the desk (or preferably keyboard wrist
support), hands held over base of keyboard with wrists in neutral
position and fingers flexed over keys. In addition, your head and
neck needs to be an area of stability. Typing should NOT include
much head and eye movement. Vision should, at most times, be
focused on the screen. If copying from a document is required,
make sure the document is placed upright in line with the screen, which
will reduce the amount of head and eye movement away from the screen to
see the document.
True touch typing; typing on a keyboard with no need for looking at fingers or keys and a trained 'finger-position' sense for the physical location of keys, is the basis for development of fast and accurate typing. Developing the technique initially of knowing where all the keys are on the keyboard and which fingers to use is the initial, and most challenging, phase. It is during this stage that you should start moving away from using your vision to 'find' the keys. Once you've learned the location of keys, challenge your fingers to find the correct keys, without looking, even if you need to make frequent corrections.
It is this initial challenge, goal direction, focus and discipline of training your fingers to use the correct placement and learn the position of each key that forms the basis for ongoing improvement of typing skill.
A rather new trend in typing, primarily used with devices such as PDAs with built-in keyboards, is thumbing or thumb typing. This can be accomplished using one (e.g. phone keypads, Palm Treo 650) or both thumbs (e.g. HTC TyTN, UMPC DialKeys). In any case, being the thumbs not as dexterous as the other fingers, thumb typing seems to put a lot of strain on them, which can lead to tendonitis or worse.
Words Per Minute
Words per minute (WPM) is a measure of typing speed, commonly used in recruitment.
Words per minute is also a measure of a telegraph or amateur radio operator's Morse code speed. Since the codes for different letters differ in length, one needs to specify a reference word. A commonly-used reference word is "PARIS".
For the purposes of WPM measurement a word is standardized to five characters or keystrokes. So, "fifth" counts as one word, but "fifteenth" counts as two.
The benefits of a standardized measurement of input speed are that it enables comparison across language and hardware boundaries. The speed of an Afrikaans-speaking operator in Cape Town can be compared with a French-speaking operator in Brussels.
2 Types of Data Entry
In one study of average computer users, the average rate for transcription was 33 words per minute, and only 19 words per minute for composition. In the same study, when the group was dividing into "fast", "moderate" and "slow" groups, the average speeds were 40wpm, 35wpm, and 23wpm respectively. Two-finger typists, sometimes also referred to as "Hunt-and-Peck" typists can reach speeds of about 37wpm for memorized text, and 27wpm when copying text.
An average typist reaches 50 to 70wpm, while some positions can require 80 to 95 (usually the minimum required for dispatch positions and other typing jobs), and some advanced typists work at speeds above 120. As of 2005, Barbara Blackburn is the fastest typist in the world, according to The Guinness Book of World Records. Using the Dvorak Simplified Keyboard, she has maintained 150 wpm for 50 minutes, 170 wpm for shorter periods of time, and has been clocked at a peak speed of 212 wpm. Blackburn failed her typing class in high school, first encountered the Dvorak keyboard in 1938, quickly learned to achieve very high speeds, and occasionally toured giving speed-typing demonstrations during her secretarial career.
The Numeric Entry or 10 key speed is a measure of one's ability to manipulate the numeric keypad found on most keyboards. It is used to measure speed for jobs such as data entry of number information on items such as bills and checks. It is measured in 'Keystrokes per hour', or KPH.