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The SQ3R method of studying effectively

Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

Studying can be a task. If only it could be done rather efficiently and effectively. Often we study book from cover to cover. This article brings in an effective studying approach which can reduce your mental strain and effort. It was propounded by Francis P. Robinson. The SQ3R method.

Francis Pleasant Robinson, a popular educational psychologist, is the inventor of this effective method of studying. During his time in Ohio State University, he worked with an assessment team which worked on studying skills and habits of the new recruits in the army during World War 2. They used the data to devise certain high level strategies for learning and skill development.

 

Later Robinson’s book effective study outlined SQ3R method which suggests and effective way of studying. This method provides a systematic way of studying in less time.

 

What does SQ3R stand for?

 

Survey

Question

Read

Recite

Review

In essence this should be your approach when you are venturing to read a text.

 

Using SQ3R technique?

 

  • Survey

Read the index and preface to get an idea of how you are going to approach. Your survey of the book should be of finding target areas (example concepts,facts) which are important for your exam/assignment. A cursory reading of sub topics and sub dimensions given in the book will certainly help. The survey should be short, usually not more than 5 – 7 minutes.

 

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  • Question

Now after completion of survey, ask questions to yourself regarding the text you just surveyed. Use the subheadings and dimensions given to form queries. What happens is, this way of questioning will increase your general curiosity and interests in text you are going to delve into. The questions you form, write them down in a workbook systematically.

 

 

  • Read

Post jotting down questions to the text you just surveyed, go for hunting the answers in the text. Only this time be alert and more focused than you were when surveying. Read areas of concern/importance very carefully and thoughtfully. Read twice/thrice if required.

 

 

  • Recite

Now comes the challenging part, try to answer the questions which you had written earlier in your own language and briefly (suggested). At this point note down what important points are required (should make notes in your own words). These notes will provide a basis for reviewing material later.

 

Make sure that you don’t copy from the book and write very briefly about the topic. This uses kinaesthetic form learning which equally important as other forms of learning.

 

  • Review

After completing everything, the final step is to read the notes you have made by reviewing them at spaced intervals (an hour, next day, after a week). The way you shall go about reviewing is to recite in your mind all the major sub heads, dimensions with what they are implying. Through this you will work on recalling material when revising. In essence you are reinforcing what all you have read.

 

This method of reading was later introduced to graduates also. Mr Robinson had published this method in his book effective study (1946). The book outlines ways to improve on study methods and acquiring effective study skills.

 

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