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Library Orientation Programme: Reading and Notes - Session 3

Reading and note making - Session 3 - Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this section you should be able to

  • summarise a strategy for reading academic journal articles containing complex or unfamiliar information that you find.
  • give examples of how manage your academic reading and how to get the most out of it.
  • Identify and apply appropriate quality criteria to evaluate information.

[Level 1, Skills - Evaluating Information in Library Research Skills Framework]

These Learning Outcomes will support you in achieving your module learning outcomes:-

Module SOES1013 Learning Outcomes

  • LO1 Produce a written report on a topic set by the tutor making use of library resources to support the report

Module SOES1014 Learning Outcomes

  • LO2 Develop scientific writing skills, making use of library resources to support your writing



Watch the video. Complete the module from Skills for Study on this page. Complete the short learning activity on evaluating information and complete the quiz to test your learning during this session.

How to read an academic journal article without loosing your mind

A journal article is a specific type of academic publication..You probably will not have read many (if any!) journal articles before you came to University. Now you are here you will quickly find that journal articles are one of the main sources of information that you will be expected to read by your tutors or lecturers. Here are some of the reasons why they will feature often in your studies:

  • Journals are published regularly throughout the year so articles are more up-to-date than books. 
  • They offer greater detail and insight into current research. 
  • Content is backed up by research evidence.
  • Peer-reviewed journal articles are considered a more reliable source of information than you come across on webpages on the internet. Peer reviewed means the content has been considered by subject specialists to be of a suitable academic standard for publication. 

Reading scientific journal articles becomes easier with experience. 

Watch this short YouTube video (How to read an academic paper without loosing your mind).

The video will introduce you to the techniques involved in reading academic journal articles [video produced by the University of British Columbia]


Now read this webpage to discover how other scientists approach reading academic journals.

Pain, E. (2016) How to (seriously) read a scientific paper. Available at: (Accessed: 1 July 2020)

Managing your academic reading and making notes

Reading is one of the essential academic skills and a key activity of studying at University. Find out strategies for selecting relevant information, improve your reading skills so you can absorb information more effectively and read and make notes in a more focused and selective manner.

  • Complete the Skills for Study reading and note making online module (it will take approximately 20-30 minutes to complete each section of the module) 

Evaluating the information you find

Evaluating what you read

Having found and read information you need to think carefully and evaluate what you have found. 

Complete this activity to discover how to evaluate the information that you find.

Evaluating information

Allow approximately 7 minutes to complete this learning activity.

By the end of this activity you should be able to:

  • recognise the difference between 'good' and 'bad' information
  • think critically and understand how to find good quality, reliable information
  • know how to get more help if you need it

Test your learning

Take the quiz to test your learning from this session


Now go to the Referencing section