Study Formula SQ3R


Survey and question at the same time to find what the material contains. (Read and reread or read, write and say aloud.)

I. & II. Survey and Question - Method

  • READ title, author, introduction, table or contents, and skim through sections of the book noting illustrations, size of print, chapter, glossary, appendix, and other sources of quick information. Skim the index for unknown terms.
  • QUESTIONS. Who, what, when, where, and what emphasis? What aspect is my weakest point? What will need to be memorized?
  • SELECT a Chapter. Read introductory paragraph. Skim with a pencil. Mark any who, what, when, where, or other vocabulary that is unknown. Stop to read headings,subheadings, and last paragraph. If the material is very difficult, read the first sentence of each paragraph. This survey should not take more than a minute and should show at least three to six core ideas.
  • QUESTION. Now turn the first heading into a question.


Read to the end of the first headed section to answer this question. Make this an active search for the answer. Underline only key words--never whole paragraphs. restate in your own words the relationship being made. Use a dictionary if necessary. No note should be written until the whole headed section has been read.


Now look away from the book and try briefly to recite the answer to your question. Use your own words and cite an example. You can jot down from memory brief cue phrases in outline form on a sheet of paper. These should be brief and your own words. If you cannot do this, glance over the selection again.

Now repeat steps QUESTION, III, and IV with each successive headed section. Do this until the entire lesson is completed.


When the lesson has been studied in this way, check your memory by reciting the major subpoints under each heading. You can do this by covering up the notes and trying to recall the subpoint listed under it. Review daily during the period of time before class exam. Review should probably not be longer than five minutes. It is a good idea to try and for two hours daily. Make a study plan so that time is available!