How To Improve Reading Comprehension

March 3, 2023
By AdmissionSight
African-American teenage boy reading book at home

How To Improve Reading Comprehension?

What is reading comprehension?

What exactly is meant by reading comprehension? Reading comprehension refers to an individual’s capacity to read, process, and understand the meaning of a text. Word reading (the ability to decode the symbols on the page) and language comprehension are required to work correctly. These two skills are inextricably linked, so one must learn how to improve reading comprehension.

However, to understand a text’s meaning, we must do more than recall the words and phrases we have read. Instead, we form a mental model of what the text describes by integrating the sense of the words and sentences into a meaningful whole. This allows us to visualize what the text is describing.

If reading serves a purpose, if a reader is to interact with and gain knowledge from a text, and if a reader ultimately takes pleasure in their reading, then good comprehension is necessary.

Why is reading comprehension essential?

There are many reasons why reading comprehension is essential, including the following:

Communication: Reading and comprehending written material is a common requirement for effective communication, as it is primarily delivered in written form. If you need help understanding what you read, conveying your thoughts and feelings clearly and convincingly will be difficult.

Learning: Reading comprehension is essential for all academic fields and disciplines. To understand new information and improve their abilities, students must have the reading and comprehension skills necessary to read and comprehend textbooks, articles, and other materials.

a person reading a book

Thinking critically: The ability to comprehend what you read is intimately connected to one’s capacity for critical thinking. When you read, you should analyze and evaluate the presented information, consider its relevance and reliability, and come to conclusions based on the evidence.

Problem-solving: Reading comprehension is also an essential skill for problem-solving. As you learn how to improve reading comprehension, it doesn’t matter if you’re trying to decipher a complicated technical manual or a set of instructions for putting together a piece of furniture; to solve the issue at hand, you need to be able to read and understand the material.

Career success: Success in a career often depends on having strong reading comprehension skills; for example, careers in the legal field, the medical field, the engineering field, and many others. Employees who can read, comprehend, and respond to complex information accurately and quickly are highly valued by employers.

In general, comprehending what one reads is an important skill for success in academic and professional environments. It allows people to learn new information, communicate, think critically, and solve problems in various settings.

Tips to improve reading comprehension

If you want to improve your ability to comprehend what you read, there are several reading strategies you can practice immediately. When you read more, your comprehension of what you read will improve directly in proportion to the amount of practice you put into it. The following is a list of seven easy strategies that you can use to work on improving your reading comprehension:

1. Work on expanding your word choice.

One important thing that can help a person on how to improve reading comprehension is to expand their vocabulary. Your capacity to comprehend the meaning of the text can be improved if you are familiar with the meanings of the words you are reading. You can improve your vocabulary by doing the following:

a male student reading a book in between shelves inside a library

  • Taking an online vocabulary quiz to assess your current level of vocabulary understanding
  • Using flashcards to quiz yourself on words you don’t know once or twice a week
  • Making it a point to use newly learned words in verbal and written communication
  • Reading as much as possible to improve your ability to guess what a word means in a certain context
  • Making a list of unfamiliar words as you read and looking them up in the dictionary

2. While reading, think of some questions you could ask about the material.

As you learn how to improve reading comprehension, it can be improved by becoming emotionally invested in the material you are reading. This can be accomplished by asking questions about what you are currently reading.

It can also deepen your reading comprehension by allowing you to investigate motifs, themes, and other aspects of the text that you normally wouldn’t inquire about. This can help you gain a broader perspective on what you are reading. While you are reading, here are some examples of questions you might want to ask yourself:

  • For what reason did the author choose to start the book at that particular location?
  • What kind of a connection do these two different characters have with one another?
  • Based on what has happened, what do we know about the main character?
  • Are there any recurring ideas or concepts the author explores throughout the book? If that’s the case, what do they suggest?

Your ability to gain additional insight into the text and its meaning directly correlates to the specificity level with which you frame your questions.

3. Use context clues

It is possible to comprehend what you are reading even if you are unfamiliar with the terms used if you use context clues. Words and sentences that are adjacent to the ones that you don’t understand can provide you with clues about their meaning if you look closely enough.

To use context clues, you can concentrate on the important phrases or ideas within a sentence and then use this information to infer the primary meaning of the sentence or paragraph. You could also look in the surrounding text for words that are either synonyms or antonyms of the word you don’t know.

4. Determine the overarching concept.

In understanding how to improve reading comprehension, you can determine the importance of a paragraph or article by first locating the main idea that the paragraph or article is attempting to convey. If you are having trouble understanding what the author is trying to say, you might benefit from first understanding the significance of your reading.

Take a break every few paragraphs while reading, and try to figure out the passage’s main point. After that, an effective strategy for gaining a deeper comprehension of something is to attempt to restate it using your own words.

5. Summarize the material that you have read.

Writing a summary of what you have read is a great way to retain more information from what you have read. To summarize, you must first identify the essential aspects of the given text and then restate those aspects using your own words. You can evaluate how well you understand what you have read and improve your ability to remember what you have read in the long term by practicing summarizing what you have read.

6. Divide the reading into several more manageable parts.

Consider dividing the material you’re reading into several shorter sections if it’s a difficult or lengthy piece of writing. You could, for instance, read two paragraphs at a time and then take a short break between reading sessions to summarize what you have just read mentally. You might feel more relaxed and have a better chance of truly comprehending the information in the text if you break up what you are reading into smaller chunks.

7. Pace yourself

By allowing you to establish attainable objectives for your reading routine and practice, pacing yourself is not only an efficient method how to improve reading comprehension but is also one of the most effective ways to do so. This is especially important to remember when it comes to books or other forms of literature that you find difficult.

a female student reading a book

Create a daily objective for yourself that you are confident you can achieve. For instance, instead of saying that you want to read an entire book in two days, you could say that you will read three chapters each night. This will help you achieve your goal. This enables you to accomplish your objectives and gives you sufficient time between sessions to process the information you are taking in from the reading you are doing.

By improving your reading comprehension, your chances of getting into college greatly improve. If you want to increase that possibility, guidance from AdmissionSight can be a big help in your goal to get into the college of your choice. With guidance from AdmissionSight’s top experts in college admission with 10 years of experience, you can get into any college you dream of. You can talk to our experts today to get started.





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