When we read, some of us have difficulty comprehending. In fact, you may have to read the article a few times over before you can make some sense of it. This is especially so for those technical articles like a university textbook. Since you have a problem with comprehension what you might probably do is to read the article at a slower pace in the hope of trying to understand it.
However, reading slower does not necessarily mean that you can understand better. When you read at a slower pace your comprehension becomes more difficult. Think about your driving a sports car at 5 miles per hour on an empty road from one place to another. It is tedious and excruciatingly frustrating. Likewise, this is exactly what happens when you read slowly. Your comprehension becomes stifled.
What you need to know is that when you read, there are different levels of comprehension. This depends on what kind of reader you are. There are basically three types of readers. They are the ‘surface readers’, the ‘deep readers’ and the ‘strategic readers’.
Surface readers are those who just want to know the gist of what they are reading. They are not interested in details and might get out off having to go through chunks of materials. As a surface reader, you are likely to skim through your reading material to pick out the key information that will satisfy you with the answer you want.
Deep readers on the other hand as the word suggest would want to go to the root of the article and its contents. They would want to know what they are looking for and other additional information to support their comprehension of the article. It is good to be a deep reader in some occasion, although I would not recommend it always as sometimes you just want to know the basics and that’s it.
A strategic reader is a person who sorts of a sandwich between the surface and deep reader. He or she is the kind of reader who glances through the article to pick out points of relevance and substance and try to engage in some form of critical thinking as to what the article is all about. The strategic reader will always preview the article first by seeing how many pages there are to read; asking questions about the article and looking for a summary of the article before attempting to read.
Of the three types of readers, you should try to become more of a strategic reader especially if your job entails you to do a lot of reading and you do not have the liberty of time. Your comprehension is also based on your modality profile. Most of us can be categorized as either being visual, auditory or kinesthetic.
Usually, visual readers would like to see their article in their head to try to make sense out of it. The auditory reader might have to ask frequent questions about what they are reading to maintain their level of interest as otherwise, their comprehension will start to wane. As for the kinesthetic, you are a special breed in that you have a very short concentration span which can be counter-productive to reading.
So if you want to maintain your level of reading comprehension, you need to use your finger or a pen to glide through the words as you read as the movement will help you focus on the article. Further, you should stop reading after a few pages and attempt to digest what you’ve read before continuing. If you read continuously you will lose your level of interest and your comprehension goes out of the window.
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