Active Reading Skills Reading And Critical Thinking In College

Active Reading Skills Reading And Critical Thinking In College-90
All knowledge exists in “systems” of meanings, with interrelated primary ideas, secondary ideas, and peripheral ideas.

All knowledge exists in “systems” of meanings, with interrelated primary ideas, secondary ideas, and peripheral ideas.Imagine a series of circles beginning with a small core circle of primary ideas, surrounded by concentric circles of secondary ideas, moving outward to an outer circle of peripheral ideas.Learning to think within one system of knowledge helps us learn to think within other systems.

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Of course, reading has a nearly universal purpose: to figure out what an author has to say on a given subject. The author has previously translated ideas and experiences into words.

We must take those same words and re-translate them into the author’s original meaning using our own ideas and experiences as aids.

Considering the Author’s Purpose In addition to being clear about our own purpose in reading, we must also be clear about the author’s purpose in writing. For example, if you read a historical novel to learn history, you would do well to read further in history books and primary sources before you conclude that what you read in the historical novel was accurate.

Where fact and imagination are blended to achieve a novelist’s purpose, fact and imagination must be separated to achieve the reader’s pursuit of historical fact.

Our reading is further influenced by our purpose for reading and by the nature of the text itself.

For example, if we are reading for pure pleasure and personal amusement, it may not matter if we do not fully understand the text.

Furthermore, reflective readers read a textbook in biology differently from the way they read a textbook in history.

Having recognized this variability, we should also recognize that there are core reading tools and skills for reading any substantive text, some of which will be the focus of this and our next few our columns. Think about what adjustments you would make in your reading given the differing purposes of these writers: To read productively, your purpose in reading must take into account the author’s purpose in writing.

Accurately translating words into intended meanings is an analytic, evaluative, and creative set of acts.

Unfortunately, few people are skilled at translation.


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