1.3 Active reading
Whatever the specific objective of reading, as a student you will always need to read in an active way. Active reading involves reading with a purpose; that is reading in order to grasp definitions and meanings, understand debates, and identify and interpret evidence. It requires you to engage in reading and thinking at one and the same time in order to:
identify key ideas
extract the information you want from the text
process that information so that it makes sense to you
re-present that information in assessments, using your own words.
It may involve you pausing at intervals to think about what you have just read, checking that you have grasped the main point and perhaps even noting down questions that come to mind or highlighting key words that you might want to return to at a later date. A crucial part of active reading is matching the way you read to the purpose you have in mind – that is reading for a purpose.