Monday, August 10, 2015

Getting Started on Your First Reading Assignment in AP Psych

Wheeee!!! It's time for your very first reading assignment in AP Psychology!

Even if you are not as thrilled as I am about this, you are likely to have the most energy and enthusiasm for digging into your textbook at this point in the year. Everything is fresh, you're not sleep deprived (yet), and the year seems to be full of possibility. I would strongly encourage you to take advantage of that peak motivation and use this opportunity to shine up your reading and note-taking strategies.

If you are like many of my students, you might not have had to read your textbooks very carefully in the past. The number of assigned pages was small, and the amount of detail you were expected to recall and use may have been limited. You may have even been provided a worksheet or guide that pointed you directly to all the important information, so you barely had to read at all!

You'll find things are different in AP Psychology. Your first reading quiz will cover pages 1-70 in your textbook! But that doesn't mean you need to freak out. If you are looking for tips on how to approach what feels like a massive task, look no further.
  • First, check out this handout on tips for your first reading assignment. You should have received one of these when you picked up your textbook.
  • Next, consider watching one or both of the videos I've embedded below. I really like Thomas Frank's YouTube channel, CollegeInfoGeek, as he provides great, well-researched tips for college students (like yourself!) who want to be successful in their courses. If you've never had to keep up with college-level reading and study schedules before, he provides concrete, usable advice (but no magic fixes, because there are none.)
  • You may also find this video from your textbook author helpful, as it walks you through some basic, research-based tips for more efficient study. 
  • Finally, don't forget that you have that Strive for a 5 to use as a resource. If you feel lost at sea without reading guides and worksheets to direct your reading, this is a great way to provide yourself with some supports. Sure, it takes a while, but READING YOUR TEXTBOOK CAREFULLY ALWAYS TAKES TIME! So, pace yourself, and dig in! 
How To Read Your Textbooks More Efficiently

5 Active Reading Strategies for Textbook Assignments

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