This talk focuses on how we exploit reading texts and considers both typical comprehension tasks and alternatives.

Peter Watkins
2 April, 2019 - 14:10 Europe/London
30 minutes

About the talk

This talk questions some of the orthodoxies around how we exploit reading texts and in particular the use of standard comprehension check exercises that are a common feature of many published materials. We consider the pros and cons of such exercises and suggest some alternatives. Some research examining reading with no explicit task is also outlined.


It was refreshing and thought provoking to hear about summarising and retelling as effective learning strategies for demonstrating authentic understanding a text. Also, determining the information through guided open questions seems a more relevant approach to reading for academic purposes. Quite a useful perspective. The suggestion to use sentences stems to explore meaning as an alternative to comprehension questions is also useful. Thank you

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