There are many versions of SQ3R that have been designed to help with reading and also with studying. The original idea was conceived by Francis Robinson* but you can adapt it to suit what you want to do.


Here we use it to help with reading.


SQ3R - five steps for better reading


Scan  –  Question  –  read  –  remember  -  review

Step 1 – Scan

Scan page or paragraph.

Just look at it quickly, notice headings, pictures, key words

Try to get an overall impression.


Step 2 – Question

Based on your overall impression, think up some questions that you might want answers to.

Who?  When?  Where? How? Why?


Step 3 - Read.

Now read the text carefully.

Try not to slow up too much for difficult words; their meaning may become clear as you read on.

Don't take notes at this stage.


Step 4 - Remember

Now test your memory.  Without looking at the text, jot down the points that you can remember.


Step 5 - review

Now read the passage again.

Make some brief notes – you can use a mind map here if you want to.

Look away from the text and imagine you are trying to explain it to a friend.


Don't forget – you can adapt this to suit you – but make sure you have all five steps – otherwise it won't be SQ3R!


*Robinson, Francis Pleasant, (1961, 1970) Effective study (4th ed.), Harper & Row, New York, NY.

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