Critical Reading

The Critical Reading materials (from ELC1001) are designed to help you be critical about the texts that you encounter. The following videos will explain and demonstrate a methodology for approaching texts critically. This is an important skill because the amount of information we encounter is frequently overwhelming, and we need to develop an independent and informed opinion by reading deeply into the text and understanding the context.

After going through the materials, you should be able to :

  • Systematically raise questions about how any text that you read emerges from and interacts with a particular context
  • Divide a text into meaningful segments that allow you to understand the flow of the argument
  • Identify and label the parts of the text’s argument
  • Evaluate the argument
  • Engage with and respond to the text’s argument

1. Overview: Why critical reading.

Watch the first video to learn why critical reading is an important skill for you.


2. Reading around the text.

Reading around the text is an important part of critical reading, because it allows you to predict the arguments the text makes, as well as the basis of those arguments. Conducting the preview before entering the main arguments of the text enable you to ground the arguments and evaluate them within an ethical framework.

The following three videos show you how to conduct a preview of the text, and to ask questions about how the text emerges from a particular context.

Video: Reading around the text 1

Video: Reading around the text 2

Video: Reading around the text 3


Here are two readings which accompany the videos found in this section.

Diabetes: The rice you eat is worse than sugary drinks 

Addressing diabetes and regulating the food and beverage industry: misplaced stigmatization of rice


3. Understanding the argument.

Please watch four videos which lead you through the process of identifying and labeling the parts of the argument in the text.

Video: Understanding arguments 1 

Video: Understanding arguments 2

Video: Understanding arguments 3 

Video: Understanding arguments 4 


4. Evaluating the argument.

The next six videos take you through the process of making reasoned judgments about the parts of the argument in the text.

Video: Evaluating arguments 1

Video: Evaluating arguments 2 

Video: Evaluating arguments 3

Video: Evaluating arguments 4 

Video: Evaluating arguments 5

Video: Evaluating argumentst 6 


5. Multimodal critical reading.

Finally, watch two videos that explain how the critical reading skills you have acquired over the previous sections can be applied to other modes of text such as visual aids and videos.

Video: Multimodalities 1

Video: Multimodalities 2 

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