Higher Education

Joining a Community of Readers, 6th Edition

  • Roberta Alexander San Diego City College
  • ISBN-10: 1133586821  |  ISBN-13: 9781133586821
  • 528 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 2011, 2008, 2005
  • © 2014 | Published
  • College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $95.25
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A contemporary thematic reader for low to mid-level reading courses, JOINING A COMMUNITY OF READERS offers a holistic approach to developing reading skills and building schema. It maintains a constant focus on key skills while providing ample practice with shorter and longer readings. The real-life context for skill instruction engages students as they are able to stay with a single theme throughout each instructive unit. The authors' PRO reading strategy (Prepare to Read, Read Actively and Reflect, and Organize to Learn) places an emphasis on pre-reading, active reading, and post-reading activities throughout the text and gets students applying the skills in the context of the reading process. Significant attention is given to vocabulary skills and finding the main idea and support. The Sixth Edition includes a brand new theme sure to capture your students' attention: "Drugs and Our Society."

Additional Product Information

Features and Benefits

  • Thematic organization: Each chapter focuses on one theme so students can work with the ideas long enough to begin to understand and use the material in its complexity. The explanations of the readings and examples used for skills are connected and related to the chapter theme, so the skills themselves are more accessible.
  • A holistic approach to reading that presents reading skills in the context of real-life issues helps students adapt reading and study strategies to all of their academic courses as well as to the workplace.
  • Focus on the reading process: The essential steps to reading--prereading activities, active reading, and postreading tasks--are build into each chapter. Students apply the new skills learned within the context of the reading process.
  • Vocabulary skills: In addition to a chapter on vocabulary skills, exercises reinforcing vocabulary skills are integrated throughout the text.
  • Critical thinking skills: By focusing on one theme at a time, students have the opportunity to understand the topic and its context in more depth. This greater depth allows student to apply critical thinking skills more effectively in class discussions, assigned writings, and collaborative activities.
  • Language Tips: To provide nonnative speakers of English and other beginning college students with strategies for better understanding their reading materials, this feature provides instructional sections and exercises on language issues such as word forms, complete sentences and paraphrasing.
  • Make Connections and Write: A focus on writing is realized through this recurrent exercise that emphasizes the reading-writing connection as it encourages students to make connections by working collaboratively with other students and by relating reading content to their own experience and previous knowledge.
  • Organize to Learn: This feature teaches students learning strategies and study skills, including how to organize their thoughts and classroom material.
  • Collaborative exercises and activities provide multiple opportunities for group work and collaboration.
  • End-of chapter review material includes a "Putting It Together" chart that graphically summarizes the skills the chapter has introduced, a skills review activity, writing assignments, post-reading activities for further group work, and a web-based activity.
  • Two mastery tests in each chapter give students further opportunities to master skills and to evaluate their progress. In addition, cumulative mastery tests at the back of the book assess all the core skills in the book. They can be used as pretest and posttest instruments to measure student progress or for student practice at the end of the term.

Table of Contents

To the Instructor.
Features of Joining a Community of Readers, Sixth Edition.
To the Student.
1. The Reading Process: Becoming a Successful Student.
2. Working with Words: Technology and You.
3. Main Ideas: How We Look.
4. Unstated Main Ideas: Challenges in Education.
5. Main Ideas and Supporting Details: Popular Culture.
6. Supporting Details: Drugs in Our Society.
7. Patterns of Organization: Families.
8. Inferences: Coming of Age.
9. Critical Reading: Social Connectedness and Community.
Additional Readings and Exercises.
Cululative Mastery Tests.

What's New

  • NEW! Chapter 6. Chapter 6 has a new theme, "Drugs and Our Society," and it has been designed to strengthen students' summary writing skills. The six new readings include readings on both legal and illegal drugs, prescription and over the counter drugs, the traditional ritual uses of peyote, as well as prevention and policy approaches to drug abuse.
  • NEW! Ten new readings! Two new textbook readings come from important sociology college textbooks. Two new personal narratives address overcoming challenges and adjusting to college life are. Three readings are adaptations of important and current New York Times articles from 2011 and 2012. Three readings about drugs and our society were written expressly for the Sixth Edition of Joining a Community of Readers. Finally, the new cumulative test is a college textbook reading about how the inequities of wealth distribution affect our lives.
  • NEW! Thematic updates Chapter themes on technology, education, popular culture, and television have been updated to reflect recent developments.
  • NEW! Aplia's innovative and easy-to-use technology offers students interactive learning experiences and immediate feedback as well as innovative teaching materials and automatically graded coursework.

Learning Resource Bundles

Choose the textbook packaged with the resources that best meet your course and student needs. Contact your Learning Consultant for more information.

Printed Text + Aplia Instant Access Code

ISBN-10: 1581758642 | ISBN-13: 9781581758641

List Price = $139.95  | CengageBrain Price = $139.95  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $105.25

This Bundle Includes:

  • Joining a Community of Readers
    List Price = $126.95  | CengageBrain Price = $126.95  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $95.25
  • Aplia™, 1 term Instant Access
    List Price = $80.00  | CengageBrain Price = $80.00  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $80.00

Efficacy and Outcomes


"We have used this text at John Tyler for about six years for our lowest level of reading and have found it covers the essential reading skills needed by this level of student in the most interesting and appealing format. Although its focus is skills, its thematic arrangement appears more like a reader used in other English courses and avoids the "workbook" look. The articles are current and promote a lively discussion."

— Judith Johnson, John Tyler Community College

"I really like the text. I choose to use it because I like the web activities. I also like the collaboration suggestions and I think the material is presented in a clear and understandable way. I also like how the exercises give students a chance to practice, but do not overwhelm them with busy work...The topics for the readings are also very interesting especially in a multicultural environment."

— Candace Komlodi, GateWay Community College


All supplements have been updated in coordination with the main title. Select the main title's "About" tab, then select "What's New" for updates specific to title's edition.

For more information about these supplements, or to obtain them, contact your Learning Consultant.

Instructor Supplements

Instructor's Resource Manual  (ISBN-10: 1285415965 | ISBN-13: 9781285415963)

The Instructor's Manual and Test Bank offers: teaching tips, including suggestions for integrating critical thinking and group activities into class; a section on helping ESL students succeed with this text; a sample course syllabus; and a robust test bank featuring multiple exams for each chapter.

Aplia™, 1 term Instant Access  (ISBN-10: 128541599X | ISBN-13: 9781285415994)

Succeed in your course with Aplia's interactive learning system--featuring practice problems with immediate feedback and tools developed specifically for JOINING A COMMUNITY OF READERS, 6th Edition. Aplia has already helped more than a million students succeed in college classes.

List Price = $80.00  | CengageBrain Price = $80.00  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $80.00

Student Supplements

Aplia™, 1 term Instant Access  (ISBN-10: 128541599X | ISBN-13: 9781285415994)

Succeed in your course with Aplia's interactive learning system--featuring practice problems with immediate feedback and tools developed specifically for JOINING A COMMUNITY OF READERS, 6th Edition. Aplia has already helped more than a million students succeed in college classes.

List Price = $80.00  | CengageBrain Price = $80.00  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $80.00

LMS Integrated for Aplia™, 1 term Instant Access  (ISBN-10: 1285749308 | ISBN-13: 9781285749303)

One million+ students, one billion answers In just 10 years, more than one billion answers have been submitted through Aplia, the premier online assignment solution. Millions of students use Aplia to better prepare for class and for their exams. Join them today! Know what’s important Aplia assignments mean “no surprises”—with an at-a-glance view of current assignments organized by due date, you always know what’s due, and when. Discover real-world relevance Aplia ties your lessons into real-world applications so you get a bigger, better picture of how you’ll use your education in your future workplace. Master the content Automatic grading and immediate step-by-step feedback helps you master content the right way the first time. Student Testimonial: “I was very engaged; the content in Aplia is useful. The study tools and materials in Aplia most definitely help me feel more prepared. I understood more than I would have otherwise.” - Tia Student, Glendale Community College CTA: Ask your instructor about Aplia for this course. www.cengage.com/aplia

List Price = $80.00  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $80.00

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Roberta Alexander

Dr. Roberta Alexander is Professor Emeritus at San Diego City College. She has taught Reading, Composition, Literature, Chicano Studies, and Black Studies as well as English as a Second Language courses for the San Diego Community College District since 1974. Formerly the Department Chair of English, Chair of Chairs, and Academic Senate President, she now focuses on teaching and writing. She is the author of a series of college reading textbooks. Dr. Alexander earned her BA in Spanish Literature from University of California, Berkeley and her PhD in Comparative Literature from University of California, San Diego.