Published: May 4, 2018

Two women reading using a metronoscope to help focus their reading in the 1950s.

Happy Reading Day! Need help studying? Maybe try one of these “reading accelerators” like a metronoscope (in use in the above photo), controlled reader, or tachitoscope, which were used to increase reading retention rates.

Officially, the reading accelerator was not invented until 1957, but these 1954 Reading Class students seem to be using something similar. If you ask us, it seems like a ruler or piece of paper could be just as effective for focusing your reading and way easier to carry in your backpack—that may explain why these are no longer used!

Students reading in class in the 1950s.

This image, and many more of student life on campus can be found in the PhotoLab Collection at the CU Boulder Archives. We're constantly working on providing easy access to them through CU's Digital Library. However, many of these images remain in their original form. Please contact to learn more about how to locate them within our collections.

100 stories for 100 years logoThe University of Colorado Boulder Libraries will celebrate the centennial anniversary of the Archives on June 6, 2018. This is story #67 in our series: 100 Stories for 100 Years from the Archives!