Speedwriting vs AlphaHand

OK, folks, I’ve followed the discussion on the main board about teaching shorthand “in your spare time for fun and profit.”  I taught Simplified in 1982 during my lunch hour to a class of 40 which shrunk to 3 by the time we ended theory.
The problems:
     It takes too darned long to learn symbol systems.
     Only a few did the homework.
We all know that shorthand is a skill and that skills must be practiced
I’ve been requested repeatedly to teach a shorthand class where I work.  I can “fix” the first problem by using another system.  (Yes, Virginia, they’re not as good as Gregg but I can get through theory must faster.)  I don’t think the second problem is within my control.
I’m sitting here with the Regency II Speedwriting book and the AlphaHand book and can’t decide which I should use.  I’d have to photocopy either since they’re both out of print.  In that regard, AlphaHand wins because it’s shorter–and has less to copy.
But, seriously, any feedback from anyone on either system?
Oh, and I’d have to learn the system first.

(by shorthandmarc
for everyone)

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10 comments Add yours
  1. I couldn't tell you the difference between Alphahand and Speedwriting, but I can tell you about another system.   Personal Shorthand is a little different than the systems we usually discuss in that is is English spelling dependent. This is only a problem for those of us who already know a phonetic type of shorthand.   But it has several interesting features:   – it uses only the 26 letters of the alphabet – there are an enormous number of publications still available for learning – the texts are supported by teacher manuals and audio tapes – the basic principles can be taught in approximately 10 lessons – you can type it, thereby likely increasing speed considerably – there are a lot of brief forms, which IMHO make sense and are quite easy to read   Although the tapes are expensive, the texts and supporting manuals are quite cheap. They are sold here http://www.eralearning.com/   Just a thought, since the extensive materials are still easily available and reasonably cheap.   For the record — not affiliated in any way. It's just fascinated me since I learned about it. Clearly a lot of thought went into the production of the materials and the design of the system.   Happy Easter, all.   sidhe

  2. I believe Speedwriting is more widely used (and taught) than Alpha Hand. II also know that the Speedwriting books were adapted to Spanish ("Escritura Rápida").

  3. Teeline is also widely available and still taught in the UK. The first lesson is writing without vowels. Then the letters are replaced with simplified shapes and vowels are re-added where necessary.

    For even higher speeds, consonants are blended and more information left out. You see a drastic improvement in the very first lesson, and never feel "all or nothing". On teacher I correspond with fast-tracked the entire theory, including advanced, into 12 hours, but had a highly motivated class and said they were all exhausted by the end of it.

    I was frustrated by my text, which was a small print run. It went through the theory in alphabetical order, as opposed to Gregg which starts with the more useful stuff. Also, my TeeLine text claimed "no arbitrary signs" (it was created as an alternative to Pitman), then made a big deal of "distinguishing outlines", for words that have similar outlines and context. I also found a list of some in a Pitman book. Gregg is even more susceptible, but we manage.


  4. I contacted McGraw-Hill/Glenco/whatever-they're-called- thiis-week and found out the Centennial books are out of print. The Regency Speedwriting books are out of print.

    And they weren't exceptionally helpful.


  5. They should make those books "downloadable for print", just like they do with some of their books in the website. They could get extra money (for the little cost of a PDF) and at the same time, making them available.

  6. If NONE of their brief-writing systems are in print, they clearly think shorthand is dead. Trying to convince them that some of us still want/need to have the books available is going to be an uphill battle.

    Instead, I'll be the one at the scanner/photocopier with AlphaHand. Yup, I made my choice.


  7. AlphaHand is very much like Forkner. The letter is about a visit to a factory and fridges, right? They use the capitals and non-alphabetic characters differently. More vowels are written out, and I don't see any diacritical vowels (they may be optional).


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