Center for Faculty Excellence

Building Skills

Linking Reading and Writing

From the Writing Retreat, 2004: Reading/Writing Connections 

The gist of current wisdom culled from reading research:

  • Write prior to reading
    1. Devise interest-arousing pre-tests
    2. Allow collaborative groups to discuss what they know about a problem prior to reading
    3. Create “reading guides,” filled with key terms and context information
  • Write during reading
    1. Marginal notes
    2. Answers to specific reading questions
    3. Reading logs
    4. Double-entry notebooks
    5. Summaries
    6. Commonplace Books
    7. Three questions one would want to ask the author
    8. Student-generated quiz questions
    9. Translations of difficult passages into their own language
  • Write after reading
    1. Create assignments that require the reading skill developed in the pre-reading activities and the writing-during-reading.
  • Explicitly talk about what it is to read, and model your expert moves
    1. Show what it is to look for positions and to doubt them
    2. Show how important it is to know about a text’s context

How might each of these stages best connect in order to improve not only reading ability and comprehension, but also writing ability? 

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