Quote from LauraLou
I am one of those people who doesn't read everything. I skim the material before class and then see which topics the instructor lectures on. I then go back to the book and read the sections on those topics. I have a 3.9 GPA, so it works for me, but I don't think it would be right for everyone.
I feel pretty much the same way, although for me it mainly depends on the instructor. I actually had one instructor tell us that "you don't actually read every word of the 7 assigned chapters... you skim over it, catch the highlights", etc. etc... kind of like what the other students here are describing.
I have had teachers who never directly drew one single thing
from the text... there was absolutely no need for the text (believe it or not, one of these was patho... he was an excellent teacher and everything we needed to know for his (difficult) exams was included in lecture). Then there are others that you do need to read alot for, it just depends.
But I don't think I've ever literally read every bit that was assigned. I do what I need to do to get good grades- which is a lot of work, but in my case that hasn't included obscure things or things that are beyond our level that are sometimes in our books. We just don't have time to do everything, every rare disease, etc. in our books.
Also, often if the way a topic is presented in one of my texts is boring and/or overly drawn out I look it up somewhere else, on the web or another book. So I'm still doing work, just maybe not exactly the way it was "prescribed".