Ten Steps to Improving College Reading Skills, 7/e

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Ten Steps to Improving College Reading Skills, 7/e

Product details

  • Author: John Langan
  • SKU/ISBN: 978-1-59194-566-6
  • Year: 2019
  • Page count: 660
  • Reading level: 8-12
  • Availability: In stock


Proven to help students build reading strategies needed for college success, Ten Steps to Improving College Reading Skills is the most widely used text in the acclaimed Ten Steps reading series. Now in a brand-new edition, the text remains the best book available to prepare students for the demands of college reading.

More information

Educators, please click here to request a desk copy.

Key Features of the Ten Steps Series

Focus on the basics.  The book is designed to explain, in a clear, step-by-step way, the essential elements of each skill. Many examples are provided to ensure that students understand each point. In general, the focus is on teaching the skills—not just on explaining them and not just on testing them.

Frequent practice and feedback.  Because abundant practice and careful feedback are essential to learning, this book includes numerous activities. Students can get immediate feedback on the practice exercises in Part One by turning to the limited answer key at the back of the book. The answers to the review and mastery tests in Part One, the reading questions in Part Two, and the relationships and combined-skills tests in Part Three are in the Instructor’s Edition and the Instructor's Manual.

High interest level.  Dull and unvaried readings and exercises work against learning. Students need to experience genuine interest and enjoyment in what they read. Teachers as well should be able to take pleasure in the selections, for their own good feeling about them can carry over favorably into class work. The readings in the book, then, have been chosen not only for the appropriateness of their reading level but also for their compelling content. They should engage students and teachers alike.

Ease of use.  The logical sequence in each chapter—from explanation to example to practice to review tests to mastery tests—helps make the skills easy to teach. The book’s organization into distinct parts also makes for ease of use. Within a single class, for instance, instructors  can work on a particular skill in Part One, review another skill with one or more mastery tests, and provide variety by having students read one of the selections in Part Two. The limited answer key at the back of the book also makes for versatility: the teacher can assign parts of some chapters for self-teaching. Finally, the mastery tests—each on its own tear-out page—and the combined-skills tests make it a simple matter for a teacher to test and evaluate student progress.

Integration of skills.  Students do more than learn the skills individually in Part One. They also learn to apply the skills together through the reading selections in Parts One and Two as well as the combined-skills tests in Part Three. They become effective readers and thinkers through repeated practice in applying a combination of skills.

Thinking activities.  Thinking activities—in the form of outlining, mapping, and summarizing—are a distinctive feature of the book. In addition, four discussion questions at the end of each reading selection encourage student reflection, as do the writing activities that are provided for each selection.

Available electronic resources. This text can be purchased with Ten Steps Plus, a subscription-based collection of digital materials including interactive exercises, mastery tests, assessments, bonus readings, instructional videos, eBooks* of the entire Ten Steps Series, and more than 100 Townsend Library titles. Click here to learn more about subscription options, including discounted digital/textbook bundles.

*eBooks are not included with Ten Steps Plus LE (Limited Edition).

Efficacy Report. Results from a study that examined the impact of the Townsend Press Ten Steps Series on students' reading skills in higher education developmental reading courses are available (full reportshort report). This study was conducted by an independent research firm.

Changes in the Seventh Edition

• New Readings. Ten of the twenty readings in the book are new. Titles include "The Power of Kindness," "The Biggest Misconception about College Students," "The Opioid Crisis in America," and "The Four Pillars of Meaning." 

• Fresh Materials. Many of the paragraph models and practice materials have been freshened or replaced, and seven of the twenty-five combined-skills tests are revised or new.

• Updated and Expanded Digital Offerings. Mastery Tests and Alternate Mastery Tests for all levels of Ten Steps Plus were updated. Likewise, exercises in Ten Steps Plus have been freshened. In addition, all the digital content of College Reading Essentials--including Independent Study--is now part of Ten Steps Plus!


Preface: To the Instructor         

1    How to Become a Better Reader and Thinker     
2    Reading for Pleasure and Power          
3    Some Quick Study Tips      

Ten Steps to Improving College Reading Skills  
1    Vocabulary in Context
        Reading: The Power of Kindness                                                           
        Mastery Tests  

2    Main Ideas 
        Reading: Time to Unplug?                                                   
        Mastery Tests

3   Supporting Details
        Reading: Child-Rearing Styles
        Mastery Tests

  Implied Main Ideas
        Reading: Rowing the Bus
        Mastery Tests

5    Relationships I
        Reading: From Crayons to Chemo, He's Back by Her Side    
        Mastery Tests  

6    Relationships II
        Reading: Students in Shock
        Mastery Tests

7    Inferences
        Reading: Relationships in the 21st Century                  
        Mastery Tests           

8    Purpose and Tone
        Reading: The Scholarship Jacket
        Mastery Tests

9    Argument
        Reading: The Biggest Misconception about College Students.
        Mastery Tests

10   Critical Reading
        Reading: The 2,000-Year-Old Wonder Drug
        Mastery Tests

Ten Reading Selections

1    The True Meaning of Love                                                     
2    Sleepless in America                                                             
3    Not If, But When                                                                   
4    The Opioid Crisis in America                                                  
5    Vulnerable Areas in the Marital Adjustment                             
6    Coping with Nervousness
7    Compliance Techniques: Getting People to Say Yes
8    Lizzie Borden
9    The Four Pillars of Meaning                                                   
10   The Power Within

Relationships and Combined-Skills Tests

1. Relationships Tests
2. Combined-Skills Tests

      Pronunciation Guide
      Writing Assignments 
      Limited Answer Key

Supplementary Materials

Ten Steps to Improving College Reading Skills, 7/e, includes the following supplements:

Print Supplement

This text features an annotated Instructor’s Editionwhich is identical to the student book except that it provides answers to all practices and tests. The Instructor's Edition also includes useful hints and annotations to help teachers scaffold lessons. The Instructor's Edition is free by request to educators with a class adoption of 20 or more books.

Digital Supplements

1. An Instructor’s Manual and Test Bank includes teaching suggestions, a model syllabus, and readability levels for the text and its reading selections. Available to educators in the Learning Center, this PDF supplement also contains four additional mastery tests for each of the skills taught in Part One—all on sheets that can be copied or printed for use with students.

2.  PowerPoint presentations have been crafted to teach key skills and concepts directly to students. These PowerPoints are available to instructors in the Learning Center and can be used with or without the text.

3. Ten Steps Plus is a subscription-based collection of powerful digital resources that teach college reading skills. Based on the proven pedagogy of the Ten Steps SeriesTen Steps Plus includes interactive exercises, mastery tests, assessments, and instructional videos to equip students for success in the classroom and beyond. Click here to learn more about Ten Steps Plus.  

To Obtain Supplements

Print supplements can be obtained quickly by contacting Townsend Press. Call us toll-free at 800-772-6410 or e-mail our customer support team at (cs@townsendpress.com). Digital supplements are free to educators with a valid instructor account in the Learning Center. Get yours here.