The concept of comprehension and retention

Discuss the role of building comprehension and retention in improving quality of learning and increase academic achievement of students

For understanding the role of comprehension and retention the very first thing to be discussed is the definition of both of the terms. Comprehension is an act of comprehending the text we are reading. Comprehension is an adopted act which stays for not so long and is just for the moment when a person is reading, enjoying and understanding a text (Kintsch and Vipond, 2014). While, retention is the ability to recall or remember the information which we have read, after some time. There are many readers and students which couldn’t reply to the questions regarding the text which they’ve read some time back and that’s the problem because of their retention. For having the best of reading experience and learning something through that reading, a reader should acquire strong sense of comprehension and retention (Windham, Rehfuss, Williams, Pugh and Tincher-Ladner, 2014).

Reading a material brings in different kinds of challenges for the students and these challenges could be met after following the steps of retention and comprehension. Following the steps of retention and comprehension can bring in a variety of favors for the students. The very first thing/favor met by the reader is building a strong sense of understanding within and building in the sense of practicality. Understanding and remembering any material can then actually lead a person to understand and remember the facts and figures in his daily life. Moreover, the strong sense of retention and comprehension can also make a person to think and act critically. The development of critical readers (students) and thinkers can thus be a result of comprehension and retention. Critically thinking and understanding situations is also a part of developed and enhanced practicality within a person. This then enables a reader to ensure the analytical skills inside him and to cater the situations in his life likewise. Students with a strong sense of reading through retention and comprehension actually becomes sufficient enough to handle the tough days and the leading consequences in their lives. Furthermore, the students are also able to acquire and develop skills within them and thus apply them in their daily lives. On the whole, skilled retention and comprehension doesn’t only effects the reader’s reading or academic life but also enables them to implement them in their daily routines, professionalism and to further excel in these fields.

Considering the factors of retention and comprehension in the academic life of students can draw enough attention to that. The students who involves, reading and then analyzing that content actually draws a lot of success towards their academic life. The students enable themselves for understanding and evaluating and comprehending their tasks and academic information which then effects their grades and academic success (Kintsch and Vipond, 2014). Moreover, students also become enough fed with knowledge that they starts subjecting their excessive academic life by no or negligible help from elders or others. Retention and comprehension also enables a student to carry on with a positive attitude throughout their academic career and face the challenges coming their way with enough strength and affection.  Whilst, reading retention and comprehension also builds enough strong vocabulary and knowledge in a student that he can easily outclass the academic world he has been living and growing in (Ghanbari and Marzban, 2014). Acknowledging, comprehending and analyzing the course books with strongly built retention process can actually lead a student towards academic success and can actually make him shine brighter in his academic world (Kintsch and Vipond, 2014).

The further questions which are usually raised are related to the methods and techniques regarding how one can develop the strong sense of retention and comprehension within is asked. There are many technical approaches introduced for developing both of these aspects and one of those strategies is the technique named as SQ3R technique. This technique follows up the steps of survey, question, read, recite, and review/reflect (Gibson, 2018). On the whole, this technique supports the idea of making the student to get engaged, analyze, support, reflect, build argument and criticize the text he is soon going to read. These steps actually draws enough student’s attention towards the text and further enables them to perform the acts of comprehension and retention (Khusniyah, Rasyid, and Lustyantie, 2018).

Evaluate the obstacles pertaining to building comprehension and retention

There are many students who face difficulties while retaining and comprehending their reading materials. There are many reasons behind pertaining the comprehension and retention within a student. The very first obstacle which arises while building comprehension and retention is the mismatching of the already fed information in the student’s mind and the information he go through by in the material they’ve been reading. While, many of the reading resources doesn’t also matches with the student’s mind and the already acknowledged information.

Moreover, many students are also reported to go through the toughness of retention and comprehension due to the strong vocabulary and language skills used in the reading materials (Alkhawaldeh, 2012).The strong vocabulary involved in the reading materials makes it hard for the students to absorb the important information and to further analyze and examine the material. While, many of the students face obstacles due to the lack in concentration and focus they give while reading a material. In most of the cases students are found to just skimming the text and not giving the whole of their attention to their material. Such carelessness of the students prevents them from comprehending and evaluating the reading material.

While evaluating these problems it is to be seen that for generating the sense of retention and comprehension in the students, the role of teachers, institutions and students themselves should be favored. The very first technique to tackle these obstacles the teachers are expected to give a wide range of vocabulary intake to the students while outputting their lectures and teaching techniques (Al-Ghazo, 2015).  Moreover, the students should also be given an easy coursework with an ease in vocabulary which is easily understandable and should also be given a coursework which matches their level of understanding.

Considering the role of institutions, it is to be seen that on the institutional level there should be rules maintained in which students are not directed to learn the information they read. Instead, they should be asked to observe, understand and remember what they have read. This way the students would be able to pay more attention to the texts and reading rather than the need to memorize the information given in the text. While, the institutions should also focus on introducing programs in which they will focus on developing understanding skills within students. The more the skilled and trained brain a student will possess the more he would be able to build retention and comprehension within. The institutions should also assign the reading tasks on a regular basis and should ask students to implement what they have learnt in their daily lives. The regulated morals in the daily life will let the student to make a repetitive approach to the text read and how to remember that forever (Alkhawaldeh, 2012).

At the end, the students should also be directed to take the measures where they will comprehend themselves for building an understanding within the text and where they could memorize the text. The skimming procedure with which students go through while reading a material should be abandoned by them in order to build extra retention and comprehension within themselves. The students should also expand the way they look at things and build their perspectives. While, they should also look at the ways by which they could involve the text in their daily lives. This will let them understand and remember the context they have just read. While, if they still couldn’t meet the ways to intake comprehension and retention then they can use external resources for building excessive skills within themselves. Such external sources can include media services and gaining information from the library. This then for sure classify them in an outclassed way (Al-Ghazo, 2015).


On the whole, it is to be seen that in academic world retention and comprehending reading is an essential task for every individual. It thus strengthen the basis from which they operate in their upcoming lives. While, retention and comprehension is also seen as an important task for standing at a special position in the world.


Kintsch, W. and Vipond, D., 2014. Reading comprehension and readability in educational practice and psychological theory. Perspectives on learning and memory, pp.329-365.

Windham, M.H., Rehfuss, M.C., Williams, C.R., Pugh, J.V. and Tincher-Ladner, L., 2014. Retention of first-year community college students. Community College Journal of Research and Practice38(5), pp.466-477.

Ghanbari, M. and Marzban, A., 2014. Effect of extensive reading on incidental vocabulary retention. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences116, pp.3854-3858.

Gibson, S.R.C., 2018. A Study Into the Effect of SQ3R with Cooperative Learning on the Reading Progress of Student Nurses (Doctoral dissertation, Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical University).

Al-Ghazo, A., 2015. The Effect of SQ3R and Semantic Mapping Strategies on Reading Comprehension Learning among Jordanian University Students. English and Education4(3), pp.92-106.

Khusniyah, N., Rasyid, Y. and Lustyantie, N., 2018. Improving English Reading Comprehension: The Role of Visual Mind Mappingin SQ4R Strategy. In Proceedings of the 1st International Conference on Science and Technology for an Internet of Things. European Alliance for Innovation (EAI).

Alkhawaldeh, A., 2012. High School Students’ Challenges in English Reading Comprehension in Amman Second Directorate of Education. Journal of Instructional Psychology, 39.

Mckendry, S., Wright, M. and Stevenson, K., 2014. Why here and why stay? Students’ voices on the retention strategies of a widening participation university. Nurse education today34(5), pp.872-877.

Holden, C.J., Zeigler-Hill, V., Pham, M.N. and Shackelford, T.K., 2014. Personality features and mate retention strategies: Honesty–humility and the willingness to manipulate, deceive, and exploit romantic partners. Personality and Individual Differences57, pp.31-36.

Israel, S.E. and Duffy, G.G. eds., 2014. Handbook of research on reading comprehension. Routledge.

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