Reading Writing Center

Reading Resources

Reading Resources

Reading Resources Offered at CRC

College students are expected to be able to read well, read often, read a lot, read critically, read analytically, and read for the purposes of research. This page offers students resources available at CRC and online to help improve reading skills.

If you feel that you need to brush up on your reading, CRC offers a variety of courses to help you do just that. To place into a specific reading course, go to the Testing Assessment Center and request to take a CPT placement test. If you already have a college degree, consider enrolling in ENGRD 310 (Prose Analysis and Interpretation) or ENGRD 312 (Academic Textbook Reading).

If you wish to work on your reading skills outside the context of a specific reading course, enroll in the Reading/Writing Center (RWC) in ENGLB 75, 76, 77, or 299 for .5 or 1.0 unit of independent study; independent study in the RWC offers you the expertise of faculty, instructional assistants, and tutors to fall back on when you need the help. Additionally, if you have to write papers for any of your courses, the RWC offers you a structure in which to write those papers while having the resources of RWC staff to help you should you need the help. View descriptions of CRC's reading courses.

Learning English as a Second Language at CRC

If you are new to the English language or if you know potential students who would like to or need to improve their English language skills in reading, listening or writing, CRC offers courses for English learners with very little experience in English to those English learners with more advanced skills but still in need of the language support to tackle the demands of college and university level courses. CRC offers classes to support English learners in the areas of grammar, listening, reading, pronunciation, and writing.

View a description of the English as a Second Language program and links to specific ESL courses offered at CRC

Improving Reading through Independent Study at CRC

When enrolled in the RWC as an independent study, you can go to and purchase access to a website called MyReadingLab, where you can practice the reading skills you will need in college. MyReadingLab offers you an introductory course, an intermediate course, and an advanced course. If you're not sure which course to enroll in on MyReadingLab, consult the RWC staff or speak with a Reading Professor. A wonderful benefit of MyReadingLab is access to a variety of other websites that will be useful to you in college. These additional web resources include the Pearson Education Vocabulary Website, the Pearson Education Study Skills Website and MySearchLab, a website that guides learners through how to complete research and write a research paper in college.

Please note that you do not have to purchase access to any website to take an ENGLB course. The suggestion for MyReadingLab is offered as a resource for students wanting structure to their independent study and wanting access to what MyReadingLab has to offer. Once you do purchase access to MRL, you will have access for one year.

Also, when enrolled in the RWC as an independent study, feel free to use any of the resources on this page or on the page of Writing/Study Resources recommended by CRC's Reading/Writing Center.

Reading for Pleasure

While we do a lot of reading in college for the purpose of learning, we cannot emphasize enough that reading is also a very pleasurable activity. Good readers read a lot and they also read a variety of texts. The CRC Library offers students access to books, journals, and electronic texts for a variety of reading purposes. The library also has a great collection of books of particular interest to students in a very diverse college community such as CRC. The following list is a great place to start reading for the sake of reading. Try reading for pleasure--you'll like it!

If you need a book for a course, check to see if a title from our list of recommended books will do. If you are interested in knowing more about a particular culture or where to start reading to gain more knowledge about our very diverse nation, start with a book from this list. If you're feeling that you want some pleasure in your life, read a book from this list!

You'll find the books on this list very readable and very enjoyable. Best of all, they're free! View the book list.

Reading Resources Offered on the Web

Available on the Worldwide Web is a plethora of free resources which you can use to improve your reading skills. Some of the better resources are offered here and are geared to some of the more common reasons for improving reading skills in college.

Reading Comprehension

Reading comprehension is the ability to understand what you have read. In order to understand what you are reading, you must be able to know the vocabulary used, how the text is structured, and even the author's purpose behind the text. The following web pages provide a good definition of reading comprehension and the important reading processes which come together to help you comprehend. A common strategy to improve reading comprehension in a variety of non-fiction texts is offered by the University of Lynchburg.

Reading Scientifically

The following link provides strategies on how to read science texts. If you have to write a paper for a science course, or if you have to read any kind of academic paper for a research project, preview these web pages from Cuesta College to help you get started.

Reading and Proofreading

When you write a paper, you should always be concerned with proofreading and editing your work. Too often students turn in drafts that clearly are not ready to turn in; put your best foot forward in all your work and proofread! This site, created by the University of Lynchburg, provides a process of editing that will help you be more analytical in your editing.

Reading on the Worldwide Web

When asked to find information or when seeking out information on their own, often students turn to the internet. The internet truly has revolutionized research by providing so much at students' fingertips. However, what comes easily is not always best. Publishing on the internet is easy and doesn't require students to verify what they write as true or accurate. Reading on the internet then requires readers to use skill in evaluating what is there. The following link from OWL Purdue offers a process for evaluating internet content. If you're doing research or otherwise attempting to learn about a topic on the internet, consult their website first.

Vocabulary Development

The better vocabulary you have, the stronger your reading comprehension will be. Vocabulary development is considered by many to be one sure indicator of success in college and the workforce. The Capital Community College Foundation's website offers many useful vocabulary-development tools: a wonderful explanation of the need for a well-developed vocabulary,  suggestions on how to improve it, fun activities to help college students strengthen their vocabulary skills,  and links to an online dictionary and thesaurus, two very important resources for the college student in any course. If you love words and enjoy learning about them, check out the Merriam-Webster dictionary website, which features a first-rate dictionary and thesaurus, frequently updated word games and quizzes, and fascinating word facts and explanations.