4.4. Critical reading

Having conducted the word link exercise, and read the discussion in the previous section, in this section you will do a critical reading of an online article. The exercise is similar to the one you conducted at the beginning of this curriculum but now you have more critical reading and discussion tools that you can use.

You can conduct this exercise alone or in groups. If you will work in groups split into three groups. Each group will read the same article but answers the different questions below.

Once you have read the article discuss amongst yourselves and answers the following questions. Write down your answers. Once you are down take turns sharing your answers and discuss amongst yourselves.

Read BBC article How Islamic State extremists use social media to recruit


For a research based article you can see: http://scholarcommons.usf.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1004&context=mca

As you read keep notes on the following questions:

  • Who are the people in the story and how are people being described?
  • What are the events in the story and how are they ordered?
  • Sources used in the article, i.e. people interviewed, person or publication providing information
  • Evidence provided, i.e. information, data, facts provided
  • Different positions articulated, i.e. what are the different sources and evidence saying

Questions for Group 1:

  • What assumptions about the audience are made in the article?
  • What “shared meanings” does it rely on?

Questions for Group 2:

  • Do you think the article can change what people think about the issue?
  • Do you think that people from different age groups, genders, social settings (city, village, employed, unemployed, educated, uneducated, etc.) have different positions on the issue? What are those positions?

Questions for Group 3:

  • How have you discussed the issue with your friends?
  • How have you discussed the issue with your parents?
  • What changes in gender roles have you noticed in your family, your community, and in the wider social setting?

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