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-Critical reading is engaging yourself in a text or

any material that you are reading.

-It is more about engaging yourself about what

the author or writer is trying to tell you in his or her

-It is exercising your judgement about the

material being read.
-Critical thinking is the ability to
think clearly and rationally, and the
ability to understand the relation of
ideas presented.

-A critical thinker should be able to

question ideas and assumptions and
should not just accept them without
analyzing if there s truth to them or
A critical reader and a critical thinker
therefore, must not depend on the use of
their instinct or intuition when reading.
Both must know how to observe, identify,
analyze, interpret, infer, evaluate, explain,
solve problems and make decisions.
A critical thinker possesses the following
characteristics: (Adapted from

1. Understands the relation of one idea to another

2. Determines the importance of relevance of ideas

and arguments

3. Recognizes, builds and appraises arguments

4. Identifies inconsistencies and errors
in reasoning

5. Approaches problems in a consistent

and systemic ways

6. Reflects on the justification of his

own assumptions, beliefs and values
Critical Reading Strategies
As a critical reader, there are strategies that you can
use, some of which are the following:

Annotating is the first strategies that you can use as
a critical reader.
Annotating is underlining or highlighting the important
ideas or points in a text like thesis statement, topic
sentence, supporting details, body of the material and the
2. Contextual Reading

In contextual reading, a reader studies the

author of the text, the time or period when the
author wrote it and the important events that
occurred during the time the next was written.

In this kind of reading strategy, the critical

reader is able to get clues which will help him to
interpret the work, and understand the how’s and
why's that made the author write the text.
3. Outlining
An outline is an overview of a
documents in which information and ideas
are arranged according to hierarchy-the
main idea being at the top followed by the
rest of the supporting ideas or subtopics.

This strategy reveals the basic

structure of the text therefore, helping
the reader analyze the text better.
4. Summarizing
Summarizing is the condensing or
writing of a material in the reader's own

It is shorter than the original text, but

contains the important ideas or
information that the reader needs to know
so that he can understand and analyze the
reading material.
5. Paraphrasing
One way of understanding a text
better is to paraphrase it.

Paraphrasing is putting or writing a

text in your own words but maintaining
original information as given by the
6. Comparing and Contrasting

Comparing is naming the

similarities of two or more ideas or
information. Contrasting is naming
their differences.
7. Evaluating an Argument
A critical reader must not accept anything on
face value; instead, he or she must evaluate
whether the claim or the argument that the
author is presenting is true and can be supported
by evidence.

S/he should determine if the evidence is

strong and valid. At the same time, s/he should
recognize any weak or negative points that there
are in the evidence or argument.
8. Reflecting on Challenges to your
Beliefs and Values
There are reading materials that will
affect your emotions that you made to
embarrass or shame you.

The reactions or emotions that you are

made to feel by the author when you read his
or her work is good example of an ocassion
where you can be able to use this strategies.
9. Looking for Patterns of Opposition
This strategy should not be confused with
the number 8 strategy . Some writers present
opposing issues hints and these are what a
critical reader or thinker may use his or her
analysis of the text.

The oppositions will be evident in the

writer's use of opposite words, phrases or ideas
like yes or no, black or white, happy or sad, etc.
10. Judging the Writer's Credibility

There are three questions that you can

ask to check if the writer of the text is
credible enough to get your approval of what
s/he has written.

First, check if he or she is knowledgeable

about his or her subject in the way s/he has
presented his or her facts and statistics.
Second, check if s/he is building a
common ground with the readers, or if
s/he is basing his or her reasoning on
shared beliefs.

Third, check and rejects or ignores

objections: if that is case, then s/he is
not fair in presenting the issues.
11. Exploring the Figurative Language
Figurative language is a language that uses words
or expressions with a meaning different from the
literal interpretation.
Literal language is simply a statement of a fact
as they are while figurative speech or language makes
use of exaggerations to emphasize a point.

Simile, metaphor, personification, euphemism,

apostrophe and hyperbole are some commonly used
figurative language.
12. Recognizing Emotional Manipulation

Some writers may become emotionally

manipulative if they want their readers to agree
with them or to believe what they are saying and
resort to false and exaggerated statements or

As a reader, you have to be suspicious and be

cautions when the writer uses emotionally loaded
words, writes very harsh and abusive things about
against someone or something or maligns or insults
Aside from critical reading strategies given
above, the SQ3R Method is a strategy
commonly used.

The method is introduced by Francis pleasant

Robinson in his book, Effective Study (1946),
where S stands for survey; Q for question; and
the 3Rs for Read, Recite and Review.

The SQ3R method actually makes use of not

just one but four methods all rolled into one.
S-urvey means you browse the book to
identify headings and other features
of the text. This is the part where you
attempt to identify the central idea of
the material.

Q-uestion, as the term implies, is to

formulate questions about the text.
R-ead is to begin the reading of the material.

Here are examples of questions to ask

when reading:

What is the text all about?

Who is the author?
What is his purpose for writing the material?
What do I already know about the topic or
R-ecite is to answer the
questions that have been
formulated in Q.

R-eview, is for the student to

test himself be recalling the
information he has learned.