When Reading is Tough
- Read it again. Difficult material is often easier the second time around.
- Read it aloud. Read the passage out loud several times with different inflections. Pretend you are
the author talking.
- Stand up. Changing positions can combat fatigue. Stand as you read aloud, especially if you
get stuck on a tough passage.
- Hold a mini-review. Pause briefly to summarize. Stop at the end of the paragraph and recite in your own
words what you have read.
- Look for essential words. Cross out all the adjectives and adverbs, and read the sentence without them. Find
the important word.
- Skip around. Jump to the end of the chapter and read the summary or conclusion to get the big
- Pretend you understand, then explain it. Pretend the material is clear as a bell and try to explain it to another person,
or to yourself. You may know more than you thought you did.
- Mark it. When you feel stuck, put and “S” for “stuck” in the margin. A pattern of marks over
several pages will indicate the questions you want answered in class.
- Google it. Look up confusing concepts on the web and read the explanation in “user friendly”
- Stop reading. Admit confusion and take a break. Allow some time to process the information. When you return, you will see it with fresh eyes.