Posted by: tonyteaching | March 16, 2009

Session 3: Reading Effectively & Note-Making


What do you think:

Reading is ACTIVE activity or PASSIVE activity?

Reading is just like “Spoon-feeding” or “Eating by yourself” (you look at your meal and pick anything you like on your plate and leave anything you hate)?

reading reading21

Yeah..actually there are 2 options for us when we read something:

option 1: to be PASSIVE reader, starting without purpose and any questions, let the Author feed us with all the information (we receive and believe with all we read), and ending with no question.

option 2: to be ACTIVE reader, starting with purpose/reason/questions why we choose and need to read this writing (what am I looking for?), to be critical for anything we read (starting with no believe in what all we read until it is proved/convinced), and ending with further questions.

The Effective way: to be ACTIVE reader!

(less time to spend; finding information as we need; can’t be influenced by wrong information; just belive on the accurate, logical and trusted/reliable information)

My Strategy to read an academic paper:

1. Looking at the Keywords list?

2. Read the Abstract? (It is supposed to tell about the problem, the methodology to answer the problem, and the result/conclusion).

3. Read the Conclusion?

4. Read the Headings/Titles?

5. When we are interested in detail of particular fact/information then choose the parts/sections we need to read detailed and critically?

6. Put Notes/highlight on any interesting part of the writing! Put a short comment on the paper (so we will remember what our impression about this paper when we come back to the paper later).



Why we need make a note???

record the facts?

record our understanding about the information/fact?

record questions following the information or our understanding?

I believe our knowledge is a building of many information that we have known which are related each other –> New Knowledge, Idea, or Understanding.

It’s why I don’t like to take a note fully in writing, I like to draw a picture and write to describe about the idea and relationships with other ideas or my previous understanding.

But specifically about the facts, we need to write it precisely but always critically asking the source and why we should believe on that fact.


Class Activity:

Split into 4 groups and read your own paper – make some notes, then discuss:

1. What is your usual reading process? (structured and strategic or just go straight from beginning to end)

2. Which strategy did you apply in this class today? How successful was it? Would you use it again?

3. What kind of strategies/techniques do you use for making notes? which strategies do you think might be effective?

Next session: you will practice to develp a queation analysis and essay plan.


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