Annotating Texts for Summary and Responding

From UNC Chapel Hill Writing Center

Helpful tips

  • Write notes in your own words instead of copying down information from the book.
  • Avoid over-highlighting. Highlighting doesn’t actively engage the brain, so it’s not the most useful strategy. Also, highlighting too much can keep you from focusing on the main ideas.
  • Wait until the end of a page to take notes so that you can better focus on what you are reading and so that you can try to summarize in your own words rather than copy.
  • You don’t need to write pages of notes—keep them brief and focused.
  • Preview the chapter before you start reading by looking at the text features to gain clues about the main ideas of the chapter.
  • Focus on the main ideas and concepts.

LINK TO SITE


When you are asked to read things that prove difficult, what can you do?

  1. Circle unclear words to look up or use context clues to figure out.
  2. Make notes in the margins
  3. Underline passages that appear interesting, relevant, and/or important.
  4. Pose questions to the text of things that you want to know more or better understand.

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Author:

BA in History from Northwestern State, MA in English from Northwestern State, and PhD in Rhetoric from Texas Woman's University. Big into comic books and visual rhetoric. Assistant Professor of English at Claflin University, Orangeburg, SC.

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