Question: How can students learn to improve their comprehension in college-level reading?
Answer: By teaching them to summarize. At first, they write broad summaries and then reduce them to the essentials. The author suggests the following characteristics of good summaries:
Delete minor details.
Combine similar ideas.
Reflect author’s emphasis.
Recognize author’s purpose.
Identify the topic.
Identify the main idea.
Stay within appropriate length.
Exclude personal opinion.
Comment: Teaching students to summarize is not easy. Defining a good summary is difficult. The author offers clues to the characteristics of a good summary. I think teaching students how to write an effective summary is a good method for improving comprehension. RayS.
Title: “Using a Model of Direct Instruction to Teach Summary writing in a College Reading Class.” ME Casazza. Journal of Reading (November 1993), 202-208.