Penn State Home Page Teaching and Learning with Technology Home Page Information Technology Services Home Page

Active Reading


iStudy would like to acknowledge Suzanne Shaffer, e-Learning Advocate at Penn State for revising this tutorial's content.



College reading is more complex than high school reading. You are expected to read higher volumes and complete challenges independently. You have to digest, analyze, and apply what you've read without much guidance. In order to read effectively in college, it is important that you understand the goal of the reading (i.e., reading with a purpose), and you understand and choose the best reading strategies for the task.

In this tutorial, you will learn about active reading skills. These skills will help you to recall and apply information you obtain through printed text. Active reading has many benefits. First and foremost, through previewing, reading, and reviewing, it gets you involved in the material.

When you read to collect data and retain information, active reading skills act as a catalyst for critical thinking skills that must be applied in a systematic way. Formulating questions about what you have read leads to analyzing purposes and assumptions. What is the intent or agenda of the author and his/her point of view? Ultimately, this process helps you to understand and retain what you read and assists you in mastering academic reading. This mastery leads to a successful college experience, and will also serve you well in your future profession.

 Eyes looking left to right.

Goals and Objectives

The overall goal of this tutorial is to introduce you to active reading. This tutorial addresses communications skills, requires active use of writing, speaking, and other forms of self-expression, and provides opportunities for information gathering, synthesis, and analysis in solving problems and in critical thinking. When you have completed this tutorial, you should be able to:



Note: All external links in this tutorial will open in a new window or tab.




Instructor's Guide


Click to close