Learning to Remember What You Read

teen reading

Oftentimes, trying to recall information we’ve read somewhere — even recently — is quite difficult. If you are tired of forgetting things you’ve read and would like to sharpen your ability to recall information, the following tips should help you.

Stay Alert

How often do you find yourself falling asleep with a book open on your lap, only to realize you have no idea what you just read when you wake up? If you fall asleep during a cram session or constantly find yourself having to re-read the same paragraph — that’s a problem!

Learn which times during the day you are at your most alert and schedule time for reading during these periods. If you are alert and focused while reading, you are more likely to retain the information.

Rinse and Repeat

Whether you’re studying for a midterm or want to recall certain information you read in a book, repeating that information will help you learn to recall it. For example, let’s say you have to memorize a list of important events and dates for a history exam. If you write down the information and read it several times, that information will be more likely to stick.

This method of repeating information you’d like to remember can be very helpful when you need to recall those facts.

Take Notes

Note taking was probably my least favorite activity in school, but it’s a necessary evil if you want to remember what you’re reading. Write down pertinent information and key facts you need to remember, and follow step two, above, to really maximize your ability to recall that information later.

If writing while reading isn’t your thing, you can use a simpler, but still effective, method. If you own the book, consider investing in a few highlighters and highlight paragraphs and information you need. That way, when you need to recall a certain fact, you can quickly turn to the highlighted section and re-read it as many times as you need to drive the point home.


In order to truly remember what you read, it’s important to remain focused on the text. If you allow your mind to wander, you’re not going to fully retain everything — or anything at all!

By using the above steps you can start learning to remember what you read no matter what your particular purpose. Whether you need to study for an exam or you simply want to retain the information for your own purpose, put these tips to use and see how well they work for you!

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