Doctor of Leadership in Global Perspectives: Crafting Ministry in an Interconnected World

S. O. S.

Written by: on October 12, 2016




Do you wake up in a cold sweat, trying to be a super student? Does your bed partner include books, notebooks, pens, caffeine, computer, and chocolate trying to complete your studies?  Do you find yourself sitting with a blank stare on your face?


   Well, this is the book for you! Learn how to Study by Rowntree.

You can be a super student by studying smartly. His methods will provide you with peace, self-confidence, encouragement, and downright common sense. Imagine yourself reading a book while leaning in a recliner, watching the beach waves, and drinking a nice cold glass of iced lemonade tea. This can be you if you apply the S.O.S.  “Study, Organize, and Strategize.”

This book brought comfort to my soul. It’s a part of my “inner library”[1] and I can talk about it as if I read the whole book.

Study for Learning (location 7)

You need to understand your purpose for reading the book.  Rowntree says, “You may have an academic, vocational or personal purposes in studying, you may also have intrinsic or extrinsic ones.” (Location 446) He suggests you focus on intrinsic. “Relish the parts of your course that are intrinsically satisfying—whether academically, vocationally or personally; but don’t neglect the parts that simply have to be done for extrinsic reasons” (location 478) Once you decide your purpose for studying a particular book you will be able to get the knowledge you want out of the book, therefore, being successful.

Studying does not mean you believe everything the author says but use some critical thinking. Rowntree says, “You should be prepared to process that you are reading or hearing with a critical eye and ear. Consider yourself as an active partner in a conversation.” This is similar to what Bayard was saying when he commented on reading a book, “The test’s mobility is enhanced whenever it participates in a conversation or a written exchange where it is animated by the subjectivity of each reader…” [2]

Organize for Learning (location 7)

Organizing your studies assist you in focusing and finishing your goals. Rowntree says, “students who can organize themselves are generally more successful hat those who can’t. Students who are average but well-organize are sometimes seen to perform better that others who are brilliant but ill-organized. Being organized might enable you to be more successful.” (Location 1341) Organizing improves your work and health. Balancing your life activities is essential. With our studies, we need to organize our reading resources and determine how we will use the information we gathered to prepare a paper that clearly reflects our knowledge of our topic. Organization includes plotting our time, whether it is daily, weekly, or monthly. There needs to be consistency.

Strategize for Learning (location 8)

You need to develop a strategy on how you plan to approach your studies to produce a paper that explores the ingredients of your topic and captivate the intrinsic of your readers.  Rowntree offers the SQ3R. “It stands for the initial letters of five successive stages of tackling any printed material: Survey, Question, Read, Recall, and Review.” (Location 2040)  These stages are similar to what we have read and heard these past few weeks. To help you with getting the meat of the book, “one should read the reviews, table of contents, etc., address any questions you have, read the resource, and ponder on what you read, take notes, and review what you have covered.” (location 2496-2509)

Using these strategies for the next three years will give us a similar satisfaction as tasting the Vitameatavegamin several times.

[1] Pierre Bayard, How to Talk About Books You Haven’t Read (New York, NY: Bloomsbury USA, 2010).

[2] Ibid. 108pg

note: I apologize for the location numbers, my kindle did not download the page version. ugh!

About the Author

Lynda Gittens

8 responses to “S. O. S.”

  1. I had to Google what a Vitameatavegamin. It had been a while since I watched “I Love Lucy”. LOL!

    One of the most challenging, I believe, within the S.O.S learning framework is Strategize. Studying and organizing are familiar concepts that come with many great solutions to accomplish either one of those ideals. However, I have personally found that adopting a solid comprehensive reading method as a strategic approach to learning can be a challenge.
    SQR3 is a very effective way to approach reading comprehension.

    S.O.S is a simple learning framework that can be practically applied. Once I can identify the purpose of the book and organize what I need to do in order to accomplish my learning goal then I can pull the meat out of the book I am currently reading.

  2. Mary Walker says:

    One of my favorite refrigerator magnets is Lucy with a silly grin on her face and a spoonful of Vitameatavegamin! What is the matter with our heads, ladies!?!
    Lynda, going back to your food metaphors, I also found the SQ3R method to be a great summary for getting the meat out of the book. It also seems to me to fit in well with all of the other books we have read so far. Rowntree also talks about the “Reflective” work done in reading that fits in with what Jason is encouraging us to do. I think it’s all coming together for me and I really appreciate it as I begin my paper. I really enjoy your posts!!!!

  3. Stu Cocanougher says:

    “Study, Organize, and Strategize.”

    When I think of this, I am amazed that these concepts are alien to a lot of what is taught in our public schools. Being married to an educator (school librarian). I am keenly aware that our schools teach students one thing… to take tests. Assimilation of information, creative problem solving, and organization is not valued because it is not tested.

  4. SOS- nicely done! Your opener hooked me in right away. There we are talking about the meat again with studying. We just can’t seem to get away from that analogy…LOL. Concise summary and easy to retain..thank you! Also, I think your next blog needs to be on Vitameatavegamin….

  5. Jim Sabella says:

    Well done Lynda! S.O.S. Got it! This post is a keeper. I’m writing S.O.S on my coffee mug with a permanent marker to remind me to Study, Organize, and Strategize. Thank you.

  6. Geoff Lee says:

    Yes, some good summary thoughts here Lynda. As I wrote in my blog, getting organised is key in my thinking. I find in every area of my life that if I slow down, think, plan and prepare, the long-term work is so much less stressful!

  7. Thank you for your wonderful comments. I rally enjoyed reading this book. THE heading of my blog came quickly. As I began listing the questions, I began having a flashback to my inner library and remembered this “I Love Lucy” episode.
    I said “yes”, this is the way this book should be advertised. It had you look within yourself and admit what type of study person you were, that was bittersweet. But He never shamed you. Just keep reading and you will eventually enjoy the book.

  8. Katy Lines says:

    I just hope you don’t make the same kind of faces when studying that Lucy made when taking the elixir. Though if you do, we need videos of it. 🙂

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