Video Assignment: How to Read Textbooks

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Video title: How to Read Your Textbooks More Efficiently - College Info Geek

Topic(s): Reading, active reading

Search terms: video college info geek textbook

Time (of video): 7:30

Posted by: Thomas Frank

Date posted: November 20, 2014


Video description: Tips and techniques for getting the most out of reading college textbooks.


Question/writing prompt to discuss: What are the three specific tips presented in the video?


In-class activities:

Show the beginning of the video until 1:00. This gives an overview of what will be presented. For all of the following activities, have students bring in a book and syllabus from another course. 


1. Understanding Class Assessments Objective: Students learn to evaluate assessments to guide course reading.


Show the video from 1:00 to 3:00.  This portion of the video is on the importance of students understanding how they will be assessed.

    1. Students should go through the syllabus they brought to class and determine how they are assessed, which is likely to be through a combination of multiple types of assessments. Therefore, students need to determine which assessment focuses on the reading.
    2. Students need to consider how they should adjust their reading.


2. Reading College Textbooks Objective: Students understand how to read for application.


Show the video from 3:00 to 4:01.  This portion of the video focuses on how to read.

    1. Ask students to identify how to read and how not to read a college textbook according to the video. Explain what the narrator means when he discusses how college reading is reading for application rather than for getting the gist.
    2. Allow students time to practice reading using the assignment they brought to class.
    3. Students should report on how they read the textbook. Were they more engaged?


3. Conquering Reading Assignments Objective: Students learn to read college textbooks effectively.


Show the video from 4:01 until the end.

    1. Ask students to name the tips that are provided for conquering college reading assignments.
    2. Allow students more class time to practice reading and to take notes on what they read.
    3. Encourage students to pay special attention to their reading assignments in the coming days and to be prepared to discuss their experiences in the next class.