• Pragya Beniwal

Pick a Study Method That Works for You

Updated: Jun 1

Mindlessly reading through your notes or textbooks isn’t an effective method of studying; it doesn’t help you process the information. Instead, you should use a proven study strategy that will help you think through the material and retain the information.



Strategy #1 – SQ3R Method


With the SQ3R approach to reading, you’ll learn to think critically about a text.

There are five steps:

  • Survey: Skim through the assigned material. Focus on headings, words in bold print and any diagrams.

  • Question: Ask yourself questions related to the topic.

  • Read: Read the text carefully. As you go, look for answers to your questions.

  • Recite: Tell yourself the answers to your questions. Write notes about them, even.

  • Review: Go over the material again by rereading the text and reading your notes aloud.



Strategy #2 – PQ4R Method


PQ4R is another study strategy that can help you digest the information you read.

This approach has six steps:

  • Preview: Skim the material. Read the titles, headings and other highlighted text.

  • Question: Think through questions that pertain to the material.

  • Read: As you work through the material, try to find answers to your questions.

  • Reflect: Consider whether you have any unanswered questions or new questions.

  • Recite: Speak aloud about the things you just read.

  • Review: Look over the material one more time.


Strategy #3 – THIEVES Method


The THIEVES approach can help you prepare to read for information.

There are seven pre-reading steps:

  • Title: Read the title.

  • Headings: Look through the headings.

  • Introduction: Skim the intro.

  • Every first sentence in a section: Take a look at how each section begins.

  • Visuals and vocabulary: Look at the pictures and the words in bold print.

  • End questions: Review the questions at the end of the chapter.

  • Summary: Read the overview of the text.

Ask yourself thought-provoking questions as you work through these steps. After completing them, read the text.

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