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Reciprocal Questioning (ReQuest)

Reciprocal Questioning (ReQuest) is a variation on the Reciprocal Teaching strategy. Here, students take on the role of the teacher by formulating their own list of questions about a reading selection. The teacher then answers the students' questions.

This exercise assists reading comprehension at two levels. Students deeply analyze the reading selection to extract their "teacher" questions. The teacher, in turn, reinforces learning by answering the questions and, if necessary, helping students to refine their work into more focused questions.

Steps to ReQuest Procedure:

  1. Divide the class into small groups and provide each group with a reading selection.

  2. Explain the ReQuest process: students read a selection and develop discussion questions directed toward the teacher.

  3. Allow time for students to read their selections independently and to write a list of potential questions.

  4. Have the groups combine and revise the team members' questions into a final form.

  5. During the class discussion, a spokesperson for each group asks the questions to the teacher. The teacher answers the questions to reinforce learning.

  6. In a post-exercise discussion, ask students to identify strategies they used in writing and refining questions.

Learn More:

  • Manzo, A. (1969). "The ReQuest procedure." Journal of Reading, 13, 123-127.

  • Lenski, Susan D., Wham, Mary Ann, & Johns, Jerry L. (1999). Reading and learning strategies for middle and high school students. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt.

  • Singer, H. (1978). "Active comprehension: From answering to asking questions." The Reading Teacher, 31, 901-908.

  • ReQuest (Reciprocal Questioning)