Ways to Ensure Reading Comprehension

Reading is probably the #1 thinking skill, yet it has become a lost art. 

The ability to read and comprehend is so important to getting ahead in the business world, yet we never receive any formal training in it. If you can read – and comprehend – you pretty much have the key to success.

BUT reading has to be done correctly. Print materials are best. There is a significant difference in comprehension and retention between reading on screen (poor) and reading in print (best). It has to do with neuroscience and the ability to make references and associations between paragraphs, pages, etc.

✔Here are 5 Tactics for Reading Comprehension

(We will assume you are reading a professional piece such as in a trade journal, newspaper, or text.)

🔖 Read the headings first, to get the main points – think of them as a road map for the reading

🔖 Look at pictures and figures and their explanatory text – they are there to illustrate the points of the text; they are provided to help you to better comprehend

🔖 There are two benefits to highlighting 1) it means that you were able to suss out the important stuff from the filler and 2) when you need to review and summarize, you’ll be able to skim for the highlighted parts

🔖 Use the margins to give yourself clues to the context, such as: stars for key points, question marks for things you don’t understand or want to look up elsewhere, exclamation points for things that resonate with you (think of it as giving a virtual high-five to the author)

🔖 Write a summary. If you have comprehended what you read, you should be able to write a 3 – 5 sentence summary of the text or explain it to a friend

When you get REALLY good at comprehension, you’ll be able to evaluate and synthesize what you’ve read and integrate it with your own opinions, experiences, or research.  (Hello Adult Learning and Bloom’s Taxonomy)

Try these tips this week and see if you don’t feel smarter immediately.