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Active Reading Mike Walker UNIV1011: University Success February 8, 2006 But before we begin . . . Any questions on last week’s lecture or handouts? We addressed: developing a Learning Attitude learning takes place before , during and after class

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Active reading l.jpg

Active Reading

Mike Walker

UNIV1011: University Success

February 8, 2006

But before we begin l.jpg
But before we begin . . .

  • Any questions on last week’s lecture or handouts?

  • We addressed:

    • developing a Learning Attitude

    • learning takes place before, during and after class

    • listening actively; maintaining your attention

    • three major note taking systems

    • three alternate/supportive strategies

    • the Study Smarter Not Harder. . . Top 9

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Major Concepts for Reading

  • Reading & making meaning

  • Setting the stage for reading

  • Active & Study Reading – purpose & principles

  • Methods of study reading

    • SQ3R

    • SQRW

  • Applying a note taking system to reading

  • More Active reading resources

    • Using resources: print & online

Learning theory reading constructivism l.jpg

Keys to Success the man who can’t read., p. 133

“College and university reading and studying require a step-by-step approach aimed at the construction of meaning and knowledge.”

Keys to Success, p. 134

“More than anything else, reading is the process that requires you, the reader, to make meaning from written words.”

Learning Theory:Reading &Constructivism

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Making meaning is… the man who can’t read.

  • …connecting “yourself to to the concept being communicated.”

  • You use your knowledge or familiarity with

    • the subject

    • your culture

    • your home environment

    • your life experiences

    • your personal interpretation

  • In a new subject area you may have to build much of that familiarity.

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Why do your readings? the man who can’t read.

  • Demonstration

  • Instructions:

    • listen to my lecture

    • take notes if you wish

    • put the information in your own words

    • repeat the information back to me

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Comprehension Boosters the man who can’t read.(p.134)

  • Build knowledge through reading and studying

    • keep building a context for what you read

  • Think positively

    • use positive self talk

  • Think critically

    • self test; explain to someone else

  • Build vocabulary

    • master the jargon of your discipline

  • Look for order and meaning

    • use strategies to “think through” difficult reading

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Setting the Stage for Reading the man who can’t read.(pp. 135 – 140)

  • Use an “active approach” (p. 136)

    • Approach new reading with an open mind

    • Know that some material requires extra effort

    • Define concepts not explained

      • See Mike’s resources

  • Choose the right setting

    • Select the right company

    • Select the right location

    • Select the right time

    • Deal with internal distractions

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Setting the Stage (cont.) the man who can’t read.

  • Define your purpose for reading

    • Read for understanding

    • Read to evaluate critically

    • Read for practical application

    • read for pleasure

  • Match strategies to different areas of study

  • Expand your vocabulary

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What about speed reading? the man who can’t read.

  • the jury is still out, so

    • consider your purpose

    • consider your comfort

    • evaluate your results

    • make your own decision

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What is Active Reading the man who can’t read.

  • It is not passive!

  • It is interacting with your book

    • talking to it

    • questioning it

    • writing in it

    • making it work with you

  • Study Reading = Active Reading

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The purpose of Study Reading the man who can’t read.

  • “… study reading is the most satisfying of all reading. All other forms serve a purpose, but only study reading changes you. … don’t underestimate the power of knowledge that you accumulate as course after course of information becomes part of you.”

    Study Smarter, Not Harder, p. 116

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1. Map out your route the man who can’t read.

read the chapter title

examine table of contents

look for summary or outline

look for review or discussion questions

read introductory & concluding sections or paragraphs

read all major headings

read all subheadings

read the first sentence of each paragraph

examine all graphics

take 60 to 90 seconds to review and rehearse main points in the chapter and the important material contained in it. It’s best to do this in writing.

Principles of Study Reading

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2. Use a flexible method the man who can’t read.

adapt previous steps

3. Be deliberate: do it right the first time

4. Be active

activate prior knowledge

question & conclude


5. Vary speed to suit purpose

6. Make the material part of you by making good notes:

think about the material

write in your own words

write key words in margin

underline or highlight key words only

draw simple diagrams or graphs

Principles continued . . .

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7. Check your physical environment the man who can’t read.




8. Eliminate roving eye syndrome

identify sources distraction, lapses in concentration, and where your eye travels

use pacers for focus: finger, pen or pencil, ruler, recipe card

9. Consider your study time

10. Consolidate

review, review, review

Principles continued . . .

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SQ3R the man who can’t read.






check out our text






Methods of study reading(making reading Active)

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Methods of study reading the man who can’t read.(making reading Active)

  • SQRW Demo

  • SQRW Group Activity

    • break into groups

    • each group take a reading

    • decide, by group consensus, the heading, question, and answer

    • record

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Reading & Note Taking the man who can’t read.

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Apply to Cornell system? the man who can’t read.

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Text dense materials the man who can’t read.

  • Materials such as history, philosophy, some sociology texts and English novels

  • These typically will not have chapter outlines, summaries or review questions

  • Strategy?

  • Take good notes (see previous slides)

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Keep a Diary/Summary - the man who can’t read.Great for English novels

My favourite master student tips p 124 l.jpg

When reading is tough the man who can’t read.

Read it again, Sam.

Look for essential words.

Hold a mini-review.

Read it aloud.

Use your instructors.

Stand up.

Find a tutor.

Use another text.

Pretend you understand, then explain it.

Ask: what’s going on here?

My favourite …Master Student tips (p. 124)

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Be an Active Reader the man who can’t read.(ICPAC)

  • The handout outlines strategies such as SQ3R including tips on

    • strategic reading techniques

    • differences in reading textbooks, literature and poetry

    • organization of material

    • skimming

    • memorization

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Active Reading Tips the man who can’t read.

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Mike’s tips the man who can’t read.

  • Talk to others - try their techniques

  • Talk to your professor - use his wisdom

  • Go for understanding - be resource full

    • “read with a dictionary in your lap”

    • collect reference materials (secondhand)

    • use the Net

    • use the Nipissing library online

      People will think you’re a genius

      - you are!

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Your tips? the man who can’t read.

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Mike’s Reading Resources Online the man who can’t read.

  • A web of Online Dictionaries - from English and history to medicine and psychology (over 120)

    • Includes

    • Specialty (medicine, psychology, education, mathematics...)

    • Vocabulary (thesauri, abbreviations, synonyms, quotations...)

    • Languages (French, Spanish, Arabic, Swahili...)

  • Online Libraries - including Project Gutenberg

    • or



    • (also a huge resource)

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Electronic Readers the man who can’t read.

  • Electronic Readers - freebies

  • Electronic Reader (text to .wav or MP3)

    *Note: electronic readers typically read .txt and .htm files. If you want to read your textbooks or handouts, you have to scan the pages and convert the image into text using OCR (optical character recognition) software.

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Super Resources like . . . the man who can’t read.

  • Early Canadiana Online (ECO)


    • Early Canadiana Online (ECO) is a digital library of primary sources in Canadian history from the first European contact to the early 20th century.The collection is particularly strong in the subject areas of literature, women's history, travel and exploration, native studies and the history of French Canada.

  • Study Guides




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More Internet Resources the man who can’t read.

  • Merriam-Webster Online (pronunciation feature)

  • Mind Tools-Improving Reading Skills(info on speed reading & comprehension techniques)

  • James Cook University's Study Skills OnlineInteractive Effective Reading Workshop(check your reading speed)

  • Virginia Tech Online Resources for Reading

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Treasure-Hunting On The Internet the man who can’t read.(from text book)

  • The Internet Public Library

  • The Library of Congress

  • Libweb-Public Libraries in the United Stateshttp://sunsite.Berkeley.Edu/Libweb/usa-pub.html

  • LibDex - Index to over 18,000 libraries

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If you had read . . . the man who can’t read.

  • Waltzing Matilda - travelling, carrying a blanket roll

  • swagman - migrant farm worker

  • billabong - waterhole

  • Coolibah - Australian tree

  • billy - can to heat water for tea

  • jumbuck - sheep

  • tuckerbag - knapsack

  • squatter - rancher

  • trooper - sheriff

    Waltzing Matilda - A. B. “Banjo” Patterson, 1895

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For Next Week… the man who can’t read.

For next Wednesday’s class:

read Chapter 7: Researching and Writing.

meet here first to discuss the Library Assignment

at 5 pm, we go to the library for our tour

Any Questions?