Textbook reading: What a novel idea!
Take this short quiz:
- Do you spend hours reading, only to close the book and have no clue what you just read?
- Does your textbook have a lovely array of highlighter colors that you're positive you will re-read before the next test?
- Do you read the same sentences over and over again and then call it quits?
If you answered yes to any (or all) of the above questions, you may need some assistance. The following are a few tips to help you get the most out of your college textbook reading.
- Know what's important. Read the outline and/or objectives at the beginning of the chapter, as well as the summary and key terms at the end of the chapter. This helps you to focus on what information you should know when you're done reading.
- Ask good questions, and provide good answers. Turn each heading/section/topic into a question before reading. This way you can focus your reading on answering that question, which in turn helps cement the information you've just read.
- Listen to the voice in your head. As you complete each section/page/paragraph, summarize what you've just read in your own words and write it down. Be sure not to leave out the main idea! (See the note-taking link on the left side of this page.)
- Do over! When you've completed your reading, review the main topics. Look at relationships between your lecture notes and reading notes, and try to predict potential test questions using the main themes as your guide.
These few tips should help you with college textbook reading. Stop by the Alumni Memorial Union, Room 407 or call (414) 288-4252 to make an appointment with a professional staff member who can help you with textbook reading.