Reading Comprehension And Speed Reading Tips And Tricks

No matter what degree program you are pursuing, as a college student you'll need to know how to retain a large amount of reading material. The National Center for Education Statistics reports that reading scores for adults dropped by 10 percent over a ten-year period, particularly among well-educated groups (NCES, 2007). Avoid becoming another statistic by using these tips to ensure your reading comprehension is exceptional. Here are some quick tips on how to improve your reading comprehension:reading-comprehension

When and Where To Read
The time of day impacts your ability to dissect and analyze the text.

  1. Read earlier in the day rather than at night, especially if you're reviewing a textbook. You retain less information when you're tired, so pore over your books when you're most awake.
  2. Read for 30 to 40 minutes, then take a break. Reading in short intervals will give you time to reflect on the material. You'll be more focused when you return to it.
  3. Read in a place where you can concentrate. Television or other distractions will make it difficult for you to digest the reading material.

How To Effectively Read
To get a firm grasp on the key ideas of your reading material, consider the following tips:

  1. Skim over a section of your textbook to get an idea of what it's about. Look at bold, italicized, or underlined material as the most important points. Always read introductions and summaries. Then, re-read the content in entirety. Highlight key passages for future reference.
  2. Identify your learning objectives. This will help you master the concepts, as explaining them to yourself requires deeper thinking. If you're not sure what the main objective is, re-read, talk to a friend, or ask your instructor for help.
  3. Write down any questions about the material or words that you don't know so you can review them later to gain a deeper understanding.
  4. Review the material a few times each week. The more you review, the greater the chances you'll remember important concepts come test time. A study found that self-testing increased the likelihood that students retained information by nine percent (Roediger et al, 2011)

Speed Reading
This method isn't for everyone, but if you feel confident in your ability, attempting speed reading could improve your comprehension while saving time.

  1. Try to get an understanding of the main concepts rather than focusing on each word.
  2. Test yourself after each paragraph, page, or chapter to see what you assimilated. Write down a few questions to ask yourself later.
  3. Practice working on your pace and comprehension by reading newspaper and magazine articles with straightforward content, so you won’t be hindered as a beginner.

Rasmussen College Blog Team

This article was transcribed by the Rasmussen College Blog team. Are you ready to take the plunge into a new, successful future? If so, learn more about our degree programs today.

Rasmussen College logo

Related Content

This piece of ad content was created by Rasmussen College to support its educational programs. Rasmussen College may not prepare students for all positions featured within this content. Please visit for a list of programs offered. External links provided on are for reference only. Rasmussen College does not guarantee, approve, control, or specifically endorse the information or products available on websites linked to, and is not endorsed by website owners, authors and/or organizations referenced. Rasmussen College is a regionally accredited private college.

Add your comment


Please enter your name.


Please enter your email.


Please enter your comment.


icon-colored-advance icon-colored-build icon-colored-certificate icon-colored-continual-developement icon-colored-growth icon-colored-national icon-colored-prep icon-colored-regional icon-colored-state icon-colored-student-centered icon-colored-support icon-colored-world-experience icon-general-connect icon-general-degree icon-general-discuss icon-general-email icon-general-find icon-general-laptop icon-general-leader icon-general-map icon-general-paperwork icon-general-phone icon-general-speak-out logo-accreditation-acen logo-accreditation-ccne ras-logo-flame ras-logo-horizontal ras-logo-stacked icon-general-connect icon-general-degree icon-general-discuss icon-general-email icon-general-find icon-general-laptop icon-general-leader icon-general-map icon-general-paperwork icon-general-phone icon-general-speak-out icon-camera icon-filter icon-info-circle icon-mail-forward icon-play-solid icon-quote-mark-left icon-quote-mark-right icon-quote-mark-left icon-quote-mark-right icon-share-square-o icon-spinner icon-tag icon-simple-chat icon-simple-desktop icon-simple-find icon-simple-hamburger icon-simple-phone icon-testimonial-quotes logo-accreditation-acen logo-accreditation-ccne ras-logo-flame ras-logo-horizontal ras-logo-stacked icon-social-facebook-square-colored icon-social-facebook-square icon-social-facebook icon-social-google-plus-square icon-social-google-plus icon-social-instagram icon-social-linkedin-square-colored icon-social-linkedin-square icon-social-linkedin icon-social-pinterest-p icon-social-twitter-square icon-social-twitter icon-social-youtube-play-colored icon-social-youtube-play icon-util-checkbox-white icon-util-checkbox icon-util-checked-white icon-util-checked icon-util-chevron-down icon-util-chevron-left icon-util-chevron-right icon-util-chevron-up icon-util-language-switch icon-util-loading icon-util-open-window-button icon-util-open-window-link icon-util-pdf-button icon-util-pdf-link icon-util-refresh icon-util-x