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This article reports on the understandings and practice of critical reading in a postsecondary English as a second language (ESL) reading class for mainland Chinese students in Singapore. Despite the challenges of defining critical reading in practice and overcoming assumptions about Chinese students' lack of criticality, as well as the lack of attention paid to critical reading in the ESL course, helping the students read critically was considered a meaningful and necessary endeavor—both for students' future academic studies and for their reading proficiency in general. To investigate what critical reading would look like in this context, and whether it could be developed, a small-scale action research study was conducted. The study focused on the emergence of critical reading discourse in peer group discussions of texts. Findings show that, despite some limitations, the students engaged in critical reading discourse when they were provided with scaffolding and opportunities to practice.