Myths and Me

By: Sumedh Chilakamarri

My Myth: "Reading Once is Enough."

What it means?

This myth basically states that you only have to read a passage once in order to fully understand it. This myth also tells us that there is no need to read something more than once. Many students may become frustrated with themselves if they are impelled to read something, such as a textbook, more than once. They may feel their brain is incapable of understanding certain concepts. For most students, reading once is not enough.

My Stance

I believe that reading once is not enough to fully absorb the information in a passage. You must be able to at least re-read something in order to get a good understanding. Most colleges stress the fact that reading once is not enough. They believe you gain a brief overview of something during the first attempt of reading, and gain more knowledge as you re-read. An example would be an SAT test taking technique. The first time you read, you determine the main idea of a passage by identifying the important parts. The second time you read, you plug everything in together to fill the gaps in your knowledge.

Opposite Perspective

Some people may agree with this myth as they believe reading once thoroughly is enough. These people may be victims of another myth stating, "I have to read every word." Such people feel a sense of gratification after forcing themselves to read every word in order to complete the work necessary. This is actually tremendously less efficient than reading more than once. When you only read something once, you may be missing key pieces of crucial information. Another downside would be due to the fact that the information would not stick in your mind.


The majority of the people disagree with the statement, "Reading once is enough." For most students, many of their subjects require them to read more than once to grasp knowledge about that topic. Everybody is different and comprehend certain things at different rates. You should take an appropriate amount of time reading and utilize more time reviewing, analyzing, and organizing concepts and facts. My best advice would be to, "Spend your time learning ideas, not painfully processing words visually."

Here are other myths and tips about reading:

Reading and Myths | Reading tips