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آموزش انگلیسی به عنوان زبان دوم

بانک سوالات دبیرستان و پیش دانشگاهی . مکالمه . مقالات . آپدیت روزانه Nod 32

Intensive Reading
نویسنده : غلامعلی عباسی - ساعت ۱۱:٠٧ ‎ق.ظ روز ۱۳٩٥/٤/٢٤


In this section: 
What it is 
How it  looks 
-Skills developed 
When it is used 
Role of the teacher 
Questions sometimes asked 

What it is

  • Brown (1989) explains that intensive reading "calls attention to grammatical forms, discourse markers, and other surface structure details for the purpose of understanding literal meaning, implications, rhetorical relationships, and the like." He draws an analogy to intensive reading as a "zoom lens" strategy . 
  • Long and Richards (1987) say it is a "detailed in-class" analysis, led by the teacher, of vocabulary and grammar points, in a short passage."
  • Intensive Reading,  sometimes called "Narrow Reading",  may  involve students reading selections by the same author or several texts about the same topic. When this occurs, content and grammatical structures repeat themselves and students get  many opportunities to understand the meanings of the text. The success of  "Narrow Reading" on improving reading comprehension is based on the premise that the more familiar the reader is with the text, either due to the subject matter or having read other works by the same author, the more comprehension is promoted.

How it looks


  • usually classroom based 
  • reader is intensely involved in looking  inside the text 
  • students focus on linguistic or semantic details of a reading 
  • students focus on surface structure details such as grammar and discourse markers
  • students identify key vocabulary
  • students may draw pictures to aid them (such as in problem solving)
  • texts are read carefully and thoroughly, again and again 
  • aim is to build more language knowledge rather than simply practice the skill of reading 
  • seen more commonly than extensive reading in classrooms


  • usually very short texts - not more than 500 words in length 
  • chosen for level of difficulty and usually, by the teacher
  • chosen to provide the types of reading and skills that the teacher wants to cover in the course

Skills developed:

  • rapid reading practice 
  • interpreting text by using:

           -word attack skills

           -text attack skills 
           -non-text information


Intensive reading exercises may include:

  • looking at  main ideas versus details
  • understanding what is implied versus stated
  • making inferences
  • looking at the order of information and how it effects the message
  • identifying words that  connect one idea to another
  • identifying words that indicate change from one section to another

Munby (1979) suggests four categories of questions that may be used in intensive reading. These include:

1.   Plain Sense -  to understand the factual, exact surface meanings in the text

2.   Implications - to make inferences and become sensitive to emotional tone and figurative language

3.   Relationships of thought - between sentences  or paragraphs

4.   Projective - requiring the integration of information from the text to one's own background information

Note that  questions may fall into more than one category. 


Assessment of intensive reading  will take the form of  reading tests and quizzes.  
The most common  systems  of questioning are multiple-choice and free-response. 
Mackay (1968) , in his book  Reading in a Second Languagereminds teachers that the most important objective in the reading class  should NOT be the  testing of the student to see if they have understood. Teachers  should, instead, be spending most of the time training the student to understand what they read. 

When it is used

  • when the objective of reading is to achieve full understanding of: 

           - logical argument 
           - rhetorical pattern of text 
           - emotional, symbolic or social attitudes and purposes of the author 
           - linguistic means to an end

  •  for study of content material that are difficult 

 Role of the teacher

  • The teacher chooses suitable text.
  • The teacher chooses tasks and activities to develop skills.
  • The teacher gives direction before, during and after reading.
  • The teacher prepares students to work on their own. Often the most difficult part is for the teacher to "get out of the way" .
  • The teacher encourages students through prompts, without giving answers.


  • It provides a base to study structure, vocabulary and idioms.
  • It provides a base for students to develop a greater control of language
  • It provides for a check on the degree of comprehension for individual students


  • There is little actual practice of reading because of the small amount of text.
  • In a class  with multi-reading abilities, students may not be able to read at their own level because everyone in the class is reading the same material.
  • The text may or may not interest the reader because it was chosen by the teacher.
  • There is little chance to learn language patterns due to the small amount of text.
  • Because exercises and assessment usually follow intensive reading, students may come to associate reading with testing and not pleasure.

Questions sometimes asked

  • Should the text be read aloud first or some explanation given?

- Nuttall (1986) suggests that if the teacher reads the text aloud before starting work on it, they have assumed part of the students' job. 
- Others argue that without some help some students could not understand the text. 
- Still others argue that it is easy to underestimate students. they may actually understand  more than is thought. If students cannot make any progress, the material may be unsuitable.