Monday, April 19, 2010

Purposes of Reading

            Reading is a complex cognitive process of decoding symbols for the intention of deriving meaning (reading comprehension) and/or constructing meaning. Reading is an important tool for people of many societies, allowing them to access information which might have otherwise been unavailable.
            There are several purposes of reading. One of them is to search for simple information, which is finding the main point from a text in order to know a specific kind of information such as when reading the contents written at the side of a soft drink. This is also applied to skimming which is to read at a faster pace and finding specific information but also to make a quick assumptions and making a summary of the text. Example of this is like informing someone of an article from a newspaper.
            Most of the time, reading is related to learning. That is to say that we read to learn from texts. The information that we gain from the text is gathered so that it can be used in different times later when in need. Examples like knowledge from a text book, a learner use the information for examinations, or a user’s manual of a washing machine, the user will have a wider perspective on the specifications of a said washing machine and can even learn how to use the washing machine from the manual.
            Sometimes, reading is also applied to integrate with the information. This is because of the importance of the information and the greater benefit it can give or done by assimilating with the reader’s mind. This is highly likely because it must be shared or spreaded through mediums like flyers or speech or television commercials. Example is like when there is an epidemic such as the Influenza A, there is a need to educate people the importance of wearing a face mask to prevent the spreading of the H1N1 virus.
            There is also the need to write something, like a university scholar’s thesis or a writer writing a book. They will need as much information as possible as a source of materials or maybe just as plain inspiration. They will gather the information from other works and put it in the context of their own work. If it is unaltered, then they must state the source in the bibliography as to acknowledged the source or else it will be identified as plagiarising, that is to copy someone else’s work note for note without acknowledging and certainly without permission and can be prosecuted in court.
            Then there is the purpose of critiquing a certain text, using analysis and evaluation, of the merits and faults of the actions or work of another individual. Criticism can mean merely to evaluate without necessarily finding fault such as when a writer of a music column of a magazine reviewing an album by an artist. However, usually the word implies the expression of disapproval. That is the case when a certain product do have some kind of fault or it is simply broken.
            Finally, reading is simply applied as a general comprehension on a certain texts. That is to just read and understands the relevancy of the information or in the case of a fiction or storybook, to simply read and enjoy the story without any restrictions.

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