Reading to Connect

Reading to Connect


This is a blended learning course that will meet for 3 hours a week, including a 2-hour on-site class and 1-hour online meeting. It is designed to help undergraduate and graduate students develop fundamental strategies for reading English academic texts more effectively and critically. Reading assignments, practice and activities will explore a variety of English language materials, such as news articles, academic articles, opinions and commentaries across disciplines.

The texts will cover topics related to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, which aim to address a wide range of social and global issues ranging from poverty to climate change. Topics covered will include comprehension, vocabulary enrichment, close-reading analysis and critical reflection. All the activities and group projects are intended to foster students’ metacognitive awareness of reading and analytical skills. On completion of this course, students will not only develop effective reading skills, but more importantly, grow as proficient and critical readers, while also gaining a better awareness of global issues.

The course will consist of three modules. Each module will cover a set of topics and lessons related to active English reading and comprehension strategies, critical reading and thinking skills, and practical strategies for connecting reading and writing. The content of each learning module is organized as follows:

  • Introduction provides an overview of the course, including course requirements, policies and student responsibilities.
  • Module 1: Reading for Meaning introduces fundamental reading strategies: activating, comprehension, review and reflection, critical thinking
  • Module 2: Reading Critically in a Diverse World explores diverse perspectives and global issues through the reading of various genres (narratives, news articles, commentary and opinions, and academic/scientific texts).
  • Module 3: Reading to Write presents key elements and techniques that guide students to use their critical reading skills to write effectively.

Course Objectives

The purpose of this course is to adhere to the NTU educational objectives by contributing to students’

CC 1:  Independent judgment and ability to innovate

CC 2:  Professional knowledge and skills

CC 3:  Communicative and team skills


Course Intended Learning Outcomes (CILO):

By the end of the course, students should be able to


CILO 1: identify common patterns of organization in texts and develop strategies for reading a variety of genre texts, increasing vocabulary, and responding critically to texts. (CC 1, 2 & 3);

CILO 2: effectively use context clues and other electronic reference materials to determine the meanings of unfamiliar vocabulary and phrases (CC 1 & 2);

CILO 3: analyze and summarize information from texts including main ideas, supporting details & evidence, points of view, biases and arguments (CC 1, 2 & 3);

CILO 4: demonstrate the ability to synthesize information from different sources into writing and provide valid and logical reasonings for arguments (CC 1 & 2);

CILO 5: demonstrate awareness of local and global issues from a variety of genre texts and develop capacity to become a more critical, independent reader and critic (CC 1, 2 & 3).



Week Course Content Units & Lessons Tasks
1 Introductory Module: Course Introduction –  Structure and content of the course

–  Student responsibilities & Class policies

–  Reading diagnostic test

2 Module 1: Reading for Meaning Lesson 1: Activating Reading Strategies

–  Making prediction

–  Anticipating ideas

–  Activating prior knowledge

–  Skimming & Scanning

Weekly task
3 Module 1: Reading for Meaning Lesson 2: Reading Comprehension Strategies

–  Posing Questions

–  Identifying the topic of a paragraph, main ideas & supporting details

Weekly task
4 Module 1: Reading for Meaning Lesson 3: Vocabulary Building

–  Identifying definitions or unfamiliar words in texts

–  Inferring meanings from context clues

–  Using dictionary and other technological devices

Weekly task
5 Module 1: Reading for Meaning Lesson 4: Review & Reflection

–  Summarizing

–  Paraphrasing

–  Outlining

–  Note-taking

Weekly task
6 Module 1: Reading for Meaning Lesson 5: Critical Thinking

–  Analyzing purpose and tone in the text

–  Identifying facts vs. opinions

–  Making personal & global connections

Weekly task
7 Module 2: Reading Critically in a Diverse World Topic:  Battle Against Poverty

–  Strategy review & application

Weekly task
8 Module 2: Reading Critically in a Diverse World Topic:  Breaking gender stereotypes

–  Strategy review & application

Weekly task
9 Midterm Learning Evaluation Midterm Exam Midterm Week
10 Module 2: Reading Critically in a Diverse World Topic: Combating Human Right Exploitation

–  Critical analysis—current event analyzing

Weekly task
11 Module 2: Reading Critically in a Diverse World Topic: Defining Social Justice in a Changing World

–  Extensive reading—reading to make a stance

Weekly task
12 Module 2: Reading Critically in a Diverse World Topic: To Mitigate or to Adapt? – Act on Climate Change

–  Extensive reading—our war as the global citizens

Weekly task
13 Module 2: Reading Critically in a Diverse World Topic: Affordable & Sustainable Energy

–  Intensive reading—literature reviews

Weekly task
14 Module 2: Reading Critically in a Diverse World Topic: The Secret Ingredients for Quality Education

–  Intensive reading: online reviews

Weekly task
15 Module 3: Bridging the Gap: Reading to Write –  Summary & paraphrase

–  Citation styles

–  Plagiarism

Weekly task
16 Module 3: Bridging the Gap: from Reading to Writing –  Coherence & cohesion

–  Logics & reasoning

Weekly task
17 Module 3: Bridging the Gap: from Reading to Writing –  Synthesizing information for writing

–  Paragraph and essay organizations

Weekly task
18 Final Assessment Final exam Final

Textbook and Reference Materials

The mandatory readings are compiled of online articles accessible on the web without any charge. There is no specific textbook for the course.


Types of Assessment Weighting CCs to Be Addressed CILOs to Be Addressed Descriptions of Assessment Tasks
Online Reading Tasks & Quizzes 20% 1 &2 1, 2, & 3 In-Class Pop Quizzes (20%):

Students will be given an in-class quiz weekly after completing online reading tasks.

Class Attendance

& Participation

30% 1, 2 & 3 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5 Attendance (10%)
Peer-evaluation (15%)

Instructor’s Discretion (5%)

Mid-Term Learning Evaluation Task


25% 1, 2 & 3 3, 4 & 5 Midterm Exam (Reading Assessment Test)
Final Learning Evaluation Task 25% 1, 2 & 3 3 & 4 Final Exam (Reading Assessment Test)