From UNC Chapel Hill Writing Center
- 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.
When you are asked to read things that prove difficult, what can you do?
- Circle unclear words to look up or use context clues to figure out.
- Make notes in the margins
- Underline passages that appear interesting, relevant, and/or important.
- Pose questions to the text of things that you want to know more or better understand.