If you were an avid reader as a child, you probably went straight for the story without worrying about the acknowledgments or prologue. In general, passionate readers can’t wait to start the first chapter and immerse themselves in engaging new worlds.

But as people grow older, they face multiple distractions. They have to actively seek a conducive environment to concentrate on their reading.

Reading isn’t just about fiction and poetry; it comprises all written text. Reading is an essential workplace skill because it helps you think critically. You probably have to go through a pile of reports, emails and presentations at work and don’t often find the time to read a novel. This doesn’t mean that reading has to become a chore.

Reading is affected by your immediate environment, your mental state and your motivations. Many people read simply for pleasure, but you can also read to enhance your thinking abilities.

Microsoft Founder Bill Gates always carries around a bag of books with him wherever he goes. His reading list comprises multiple genres that range from economics to philosophy. His blog, GatesNotes, is a summary of his reading lists with book reviews and new findings. Many business leaders indulge in reading to sharpen their minds and broaden their knowledge.

You too can cultivate a lifelong habit of reading, both for pleasure and work. Harappa Education’s Reading Deeply course will provide an insight into the benefits of reading across genres. It will teach you the three levels of reading to help you read more efficiently. Use the three levels of reading approach to simplify the process: pre-reading, in-reading and post-reading

Let’s first look at pre-reading—the first level of reading—that can help you structure your reading process. Pre-reading activities and pre-reading strategies can help improve your reading skills at work so that you can solve problems and make decisions effectively.

Meaning Of Pre-Reading

The meaning of pre-reading is to skim through the content, highlight key points and identify clues before you tackle the main body of the text. It’s a time-saving technique that’ll help you deepen your understanding of the text and comprehend the writer’s meaning more deeply.

Let’s look at how pre-reading strategies can help get you in the habit of reading.

Pre-Reading Activities

The process of pre-reading involves four steps or the Four Ps of pre-reading: preview, predict, prior knowledge and purpose.  Let’s take a closer look at these pre-reading strategies.

1. Preview

Before you get into the nitty-gritty of reading a report or any other writing, preview the entire text to grab the key ideas. This simply means to skim through the content, focus on the titles and headlines, and get a quick feel of the text. This step requires you to be curious about what’s inside. The table of contents is a great place to start with your pre-reading.

2. Predict

Once you’ve reviewed the text, you have an idea about what it contains. This comes from titles or headings so you know the broad categories in the text. Try to predict what each category will elaborate on and anticipate the thoughts and ideas. This will help save time as you begin to tackle the main bits.

3. Prior Knowledge

When you link what you’re reading to your existing knowledge base, you retain information with more accuracy. Reach into your memory bank and connect the dots to understand more than what’s on the page.

4. Purpose

Purpose refers to the purpose, intention and motivation of the writer. Pre-reading helps you get the big picture idea behind the text. The writer’s underlying message can be gauged from the way the text has been arranged and the introductory passages. Make conclusions on your own and see if they correspond with the actual conclusions in the text.

Pre-reading is like a primer for what’s to come. You have to trick your brain into preparing for all the words you’ll soon be reading so you can comprehend more. Pre-reading examples can include reviewing pictures and tables or figures, jotting down key points and preparing simple questions that’ll supplement your understanding of the main text.

At work, you’re often overwhelmed by the amount of text you have to go through. Use pre-reading activities to simplify the process and optimize your reading. Harappa Education’s Reading Deeply course will help you process information faster, structure your knowledge and summarize information into succinct ideas. Sing up now and deepen your understanding of the written word with the right toolkit.


Explore the skills & topics such as Reading SkillsLevels of ReadingHow to Improve Your Reading Skills & Taking Notes while reading from our Harappa Diaries blog section and  improve your reading quotient.

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