The procedure for calculating typing speed isn't obvious at first. Typing 100 words of a technical paper will take longer than typing 100 words from a children's book. Therefore, the standard for what a "word" is needs to be established for the word-per-minute rate to be comparable among typists and among tests.
- Skill level:
Other People Are Reading
Things you need
- Stopwatch or countdown timer
Have a friend operate a stopwatch, to stop your typing after five minutes. Otherwise, use a countdown timer or alarm of your own. An egg timer will be too inaccurate.
Select text with which you are unfamiliar. A text-filled page from a magazine or textbook will suffice. As for the complexity issue mentioned in the introduction, don't worry about that now. There's a way around it in the calculations that follow.
Type for five minutes, preferably in a word processor.
Use the word processor's character-counting feature to total the number of characters you counted. In Microsoft Word, go into the File drop-down menu, select "Properties," click the "Statistics" tab and look up the character count, including spaces.
Divide the character count by five. This assumes five keystrokes per word. (Another standard is to count five non-space characters per word, which gives a lower word count.)
Count the number of typing errors. One standard subtracts a word from your word count in Step 5 for every error. Do so if that's the standard you choose. Another standard doesn't subtract errors at all.
Divide the result of Step 6 by five minutes. The result gives you your typing speed in words per minute.
- 20 of the funniest online reviews ever
- 14 Biggest lies people tell in online dating sites
- Hilarious things Google thinks you're trying to search for