Reading Skills

 Reading skills

Active reading
Active reading is reading with a view to understand and relate the information to other readings, ideas and themes from lectures, and to the goals of your course and your learning. 
An active approach to reading involves selecting information relevant to a purpose and thinking about what is read rather than simply trying to memorize it.
Apply the Survey, Question, Read, Recite, Review (SQ3R) strategy.
Think critically and analytically about the notes and summaries you make from your various readings.
Read and think at a variety of levels, including: summary and definition, analysis, hypothesis, and critical judgment. 

Be an active reader
Being an active reader means setting reading goals, having a personal purpose for reading, developing an understanding of the organization of the reading, reading selectively, reading to link key ideas to important details and with a view to connecting ideas to a context, and reading thoughtfully and critically.

Use a strategy
We have discussed a strategy that involves surveying, questioning, reading, reciting and reviewing. If you choose not to subscribe to any particular strategy, use the principles that underlie them: previewing for an overview, questioning, summarizing, recording ideas in key word form, reciting ideas, reflecting about what was read, reviewing learning regularly.

Skimming and scanning processes have specialized applications for reading
The process of skimming is helpful for establishing general awareness about the contents of a specific reading. Skimming the structural elements of a reading (headings, sub-headings, topic sentences etc.) is a common way to preview a reading. The process of scanning is used to identify the organization of a reading and then to locate specific information quickly and accurately. Finding a number in a phone book is an example of scanning.

Record the ideas you find important
in your readings and reflect on and review these regularly. Taking notes provides us with a fairly permanent, abbreviated record to return to so that we can continue to process and think about the ideas we have read. Reviewing these notes regularly helps to keep us thinking and helps support our memory of the knowledge we have encountered.

Apply questions to what you read
Reading is a tool of thinking. Questioning at various levels moves you to thinking at those various levels. When we ask only the most basic questions, we think only the most basic thoughts. When we question at deeper levels, we think more deeply.