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For more information, please see full course syllabus of AP English Language & Composition
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Lecture Comments (2)

1 answer

Last reply by: Professor Hendershot
Fri Nov 30, 2012 12:04 AM

Post by Alex Moon on November 29, 2012

Hi! Thank you for uploading a great course!Your lectures are easy to follow and looks very promising.

The course looks recently added, and that is probably why there are no lecture notes available.

I'm not worried about the notes so much, but I would like to know if you are readily available for questions on the discussion tab.

Thank you so much for a such simple and effective insight into the course!

How to Read & Interpret a Passage

  • Read for the Big Picture
    • When you first read the passage, look for the big picture—the main idea. That means concentrating on:
      • The important events of the passage (if any)
      • The major topics being discussed
      • The people or characters who appear most
      • The arc or “storyline” of the passage
    • Big-picture questions often come at the beginning and end of each set of questions.
  • What to Look For
    • The author’s goal—Why was this passage written?
      • Look at topic sentences.
      • Look at concluding statements.
      • Look at the ideas that get the most attention in the text.
      • Look for imperative statements or implied advice.
    • The author’s tone—What effect does this passage have on its audience?
      • Look at word choice.
      • Look at metaphors and allusions.
      • Look at pacing.
      • Look at your own reactions.
    • The author’s point of view—What does the author think about the subject being discussed?
      • Look at the use of language
      • Look at the focus of the discussion
      • Look for direct statements of opinion
      • Look for twists
  • Hunting for Details
    • After you’ve read the passage, read the questions. If necessary, go back and hunt for details in particular lines or paragraphs. You don’t need to read the passage twice.
    • However, if detail questions reference specific lines, always go back and read the lines in question.
    • Detail questions are often sandwiched in between big-picture questions at the beginning and end of each section.
    • Detail questions depend on context, so be sure to read the sentences around the section mentioned in the question.
    • Detail questions often depend on vocabulary, so study your vocabulary words to reduce the chance you’ll be tricked by a false meaning.
    • Remember, detail questions can sometimes give you clues to how the test writer sees the big picture of the passage. If you have to choose between your own interpretation of the big picture and the one supported by the detail questions, go with the details.
  • Final Tips
    • Read for the big picture first.
    • Watch for goal, tone, and point of view.
    • When answering detail questions, read for content and context.
    • Pace yourself—don’t get sucked too deeply into any one passage or section.
    • Use process of elimination to increase your odds of guessing correctly.
    • If you just don’t know how to answer a question, circle it and move on. Come back later if you have time.
    • Do not expect to be entertained!

How to Read & Interpret a Passage

Lecture Slides are screen-captured images of important points in the lecture. Students can download and print out these lecture slide images to do practice problems as well as take notes while watching the lecture.

  • Intro 0:00
  • Lesson Overview 0:09
  • Read for the Big Picture 0:30
    • Concentrate on the Following
    • Big-Picture Questions Often Come at the Beginning and End Set of Questions
  • What to Look For 1:25
    • The Author's Goal
    • The Author's Tone
    • The Author's Point of View
  • Hunting for Details 5:11
    • Read Questions and Hunt for Details
    • Detail Questions that Reference Specific Lines
    • Detail Questions Depend on Context
    • Detail Questions Often Depend on Vocabulary
    • Clues to the Big Picture
  • Final Tips 7:54
    • When Answering Detail Questions, Read for Content and Context
    • Pace Yourself
    • Skip & Go Back to Questions