5 Ways to Improve Your Reading Comprehension and Effectiveness

5 Ways to Improve Your Reading Comprehension and Effectiveness

To get the most out of reading, it’s important to read actively and for textbooks in particular, you might want to use the SQ3R system.

Survey: consider what you’re going to read and why. How does it connect to the larger goals of the course? Why are you reading this particular text/article at this point in the term? Look for the layout in order to get an overview.

Question: Actively engage as you enter into the reading by trying to understand the author’s overall message and point. What are they trying to accomplish?

Read: Continue to question, make connections and look for patterns. Be sure to annotate, which means underlining or highlighting key words and phrases—anything that strikes you as surprising or significant, or that raises questions. Disagree with the author? Write it down.

Recite/Summarize: Summarize your understanding what you have read. Could you describe the reading to someone not in the course? Could you predict a test question on this material?

Review: Go through your notes/annotations and focus on anything y that you found important for class discussion and/or confusing so that you can talk with your instructor for clarification.

Here is a handy visual aid: