In 2003 the University of Leicester conducted a survey of 144 archaeology students at five UK universities. One of the questions asked students to list what aspects of their study they found the most challenging. Here's what they said about reading:
"The main factor is time. I like to read as much as I can on the subject. Sometimes time limitations mean that I do not research the written work as much as I would like."
"In addition to finding the titles somewhat ambiguous I also find it hard sometimes to understand what exactly you are asked to do."
"I am a very slow reader especially when it comes to very technical information. I would probably benefit from doing a speed reading course."
When we asked them to tell us how challenging they found various skills required to complete an essay for their course, over 19 percent cited 'reading large amounts of text' as 'very challenging'. Out of fifty skills analysed, reading large amount of texts was ranked second in order of difficulty.
So learning to read effectively is a very real challenge, and one that could dramatically effect your marks at university. The following pages take you through seven areas that are crucial to developing an effective and critical approach to your reading. Click on the Next Page >> button below to proceed through the tutorial page by page, or use the headings at the top of each page to jump to specific sections.