Listening is a skill which requires active participation. A
student must listen skillfully if learning is to occur. Also, attitude is
probably the most important element for active listening. So assume a
positive attitude!! Convince yourself that the lecturer has something
useful to share.
The student reveals a positive attitude by maintaining a pleasant facial
expression. Keeping your eyes on the lecturer when not writing notes and
nodding your head when you agree are both forms of active participation.
As a result, you will notice a more enthusiastic flow of words and ideas.
Typical Student Listening Habits
|1. Calling a subject dull. A poor listener will
"turn off" as soon as s/he decides a lecture is going to be dull. (Such a
decision is usually based on ignorance rather than knowledge.)
||1. A good listener will listen closely for information that
can be important or useful, even in a seemingly dull presentation.
|2. Criticizing a speaker. A poor listener will find
fault with the speaker (i.e., monotonous voice) and infer that the speaker
can't have anything important to say.
||2. A good listener will realize that a lecture is not a
fashion show. S/he will look for ideas, not things to criticize.
|3. Over-reacting. A poor listener will become so
involved in disagreeing with the lecturer that s/he will miss most of the
||3. A good listener will listen with the mind, not with the
|4. Listening for facts only. A poor listener wants
only facts and considers the "big picture" as nothing more than someone
||4. A good listener wants to see how facts illustrate
principles, how examples illustrate ideas, and how evidence supports
|5. False attention. A poor listener will lock
his/her eyes onto the speaker and then relax, expecting to retrieve
information out of the text later, during study time.
||5. A good listener realizes that each lecture is an
opportunity to get (in a short time) facts and ideas that the speaker took
hours to assemble.
|6. Yielding to distractions. A poor listener will
use every distraction -- footsteps, a door opening, a cough -- as an excuse
to stop listening.
||6. a good listener disciplines her or himself to shut out
distractions and to concentrate on the speaker's message.
|7. Limited lecture notes. A poor listener will
neglect to take notes of main ideas and details.
||7. A good listener will take notes as a reminder of key
main ideas and details of what was said.
|8. Few review sessions. a poor listener will
neglect to review lecture notes periodically prior to testing.
||8. A good listener will review notes soon after the lecture
ends to ascertain clarity of notes.
|9. Disregard questions asked by speaker during the
||9. A good listener will note down all speaker's questions
from lecture in the margins as possible questions for a later test.
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