University of Abuja

Centre For Distance Learning and Continuing Education

READING DIFFICULT MATERIAL

Here are tips you can follow in reading dificult materials;

  • Read the title and the first paragraph.
  • If there is a summary at the end of a chapter, read it. Get grasp of how the material is organised. If you need more background seek another source. Now decide if you have enough background to begin reading.
  • Look for main ideas
  • Look for titles, headings, and subheadings. Pick out topic sentences. Utilise graphs, charts and diagrams. Take notes while you read.
  • Look up words
  • Look up words whose meanings are important to your understanding of the material, but you cannot discern from the content.
  • Monitor your comprehension
  • Periodically stop and ask yourself, ‘’what have I learned’’ connect this to what you already know.
  • Reread
  • If you do not comprehend an idea, go back and reread. Restate difficult ideas in your own words.
  • Read to the end
  • Do not get discouraged and stop reading. Ideas can become clearer the more you read.

When you finish reading, review to see what you have learned, and reread those ideas that are not clear.

IMPROVING YOUR READING SKILLS

Have you ever read a book? How well did you understand what you read,? or do you find it difficult to finish any book you decide to read? Reading is the process of looking g at a series of writer symbols and getting meaning from them. Some people can read for several hours at a stretch with perfect concentration and understanding, some read for only 3hours and get tired. Our individual brains have different capacities to understand what you read?

Reading is the process of looking at a series of written symbols and getting meaning from it .Some people can read for seven hours at a stretch with perfect concentration and understanding. Some read for only three hours, and feel the need to engage in some other activities before they return to reading. Our individual brains have different capacities for absorbing and understanding what is read.

SKILLS NEEDED TO IMPROVE READING

  • Pick up a book. Try finding something to read that interest you. Explore news papers, magazines, novels etc
  • Practice your reading habit. Now that you have found what you like to read, you can set a goal of 20 minutes a day of reading. After you have achieved this, you can increase the time to 1 hour a day
  • Do not give up. Winners never quit. If you find you cannot complete the task in the first place, do not be discouraged.
  • Do not put too much pressure on yourself. When you find yourself being stressed while reading a book, do not continue reading under pressure.
  • Before you read a book, go through the table of contents first, in other to form an idea of what you are about to read

TALKING ABOUT FAILURE

It may surprise you that I am talking about failure. Every average Nigerian would quickly reject it with the following sayings; “ it is not my portion” “ back to sender” “God forbid” and many other phrases like that which are actually misleading so many young people today to believe that any time you experience failure in any activity you engage in, that something evil is responsible for it. I am not here to talk about religion or religious beliefs. However, just as Senator Ben Murray Bruce would say, I want to make common sense, hope you would be willing to reason with me.
Failure in itself is not a bad thing, it depends on how we see it. I want to begin my discussion with the following quotes.

⦁ You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try – Beverly Sills (1929)
⦁ Nobody cleared a path for themselves by giving up. – Alacia Bessette (2010)
⦁ If at first you don’t succeed, find out if the loser gets anything. – Bill Lyon.

I am discussing failure as a topic, because, the results of the last session’s examinations are already being released by different departments. Many people would record success, while many may fail one or two courses. How you handle your failure would determine your success in subsequent examinations. Therefore, rather than looking for the causes of your failure from the outside, I want to encourage you to take out time to review what factors actually contributed to your failure. It may be:

1. Lack of adequate time to study,
2. Inappropriate study habit, study skills and attitude,
3. Examination anxiety,
4. Over-confidence,
5. Misplacing your priority during examination period, that is, ‘robbing Peter to pay Paul’,
6. Hoping that there are other shortcuts to success, which may disappoint you at last.

After you have reviewed the factors listed above, you would definitely identity one problem or the other that contributed to your failure. You therefore need to consciously work on that problem in order to overcome it before the next examination. Let me conclude with the following quote.

“Don’t be discouraged by a failure. It can be a positive experience. Failure is, in a sense, the highway to success, inasmuch as every discovery of what is false leads us to seek earnestly after what is true, and every fresh experience points out some form of error which we shall afterwards carefully avoid.’’
John Keats

English lyric poet (1795 – 1821)

Thank You.

HAD I KNOWN

This phrase usually trails any regret for not succeeding in any endavour that an individual has embarked on. For instance, educational pursuit. Let me start by seeking your views about the phrase. Do you think it can be avoided by an individual? Let me hear your views. As an individual, I feel that the phrase would only come to an individual who does not do what he is supposed to do at the right time he or she is supposed to do it.

We have discussed a lot of things on this blog that would help you as a student to really face your studies squarely in other not to have any regrets at the end of your stay here in CDL&CE Uniabuja. I know you would do so Check out the last post on this blog and truly follow what is said there.

I promise you your being in CDL&CE Uniabuja will worth its while at the end of your studies here. You can always rely on the counsellors to assist you with any challenge that may want to hinder you from succeeding.

Takecare.

ACHIEVEMENT CLOCK

A stitch in time, they say, saves nine. In any activity one has set out to do, it is possible for one to monitor whether one is achieving or failing. Achievement is not a one time thing it comes through incremental effort and steady progression. As you have started this session, The counselling unit is encouraging you to set your achievement clock. That is, try on daily basis to check the activities you carried out that are closely connected to your academic pursuit. You need to time yourself everyday. Never you go to bed everyday without asking yourself what you have done towards achieving your academic goal. Set your achievement clock; promise yourself that no day shall pass by without you accomplishing at least one assignment towards your success in your academics.

The activities include:

• Checking the LMS to see if you have any assignment or task to be done
• Browsing the Net to get more materials on the courses you are offering
• Reading at least a study session from one of your courses
• Noting down gray areas in your modules which will form part of your discussions with your facilitators
• Doing your assignments to meet up submission deadlines.
• Practising with past questions on the courses you are offering for the session
• Joining a study group ( it is advisable not to be more than 5 members in a group)
• Having general positive attitude and disposition towards your academic pursuit.

DO NOT WAIT TILL RESIDENTIAL, START NOW. IT PAYS TO BE PREPARED

GOOD LUCK