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Make It Stick: The Science of Successful Learning

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To most of us, learning something “the hard way” implies wasted time and effort. Good teaching, we believe, should be creatively tailored to the different learning styles of students and should use strategies that make learning easier. Make It Stick turns fashionable ideas like these on their head. Drawing on recent discoveries in cognitive psychology and other disciplines, the authors offer concrete techniques for becoming more productive learners.

Memory plays a central role in our ability to carry out complex cognitive tasks, such as applying knowledge to problems never before encountered and drawing inferences from facts already known. New insights into how memory is encoded, consolidated, and later retrieved have led to a better understanding of how we learn. Grappling with the impediments that make learning challenging leads both to more complex mastery and better retention of what was learned.

Many common study habits and practice routines turn out to be counterproductive. Underlining and highlighting, rereading, cramming, and single-minded repetition of new skills create the illusion of mastery, but gains fade quickly. More complex and durable learning come from self-testing, introducing certain difficulties in practice, waiting to re-study new material until a little forgetting has set in, and interleaving the practice of one skill or topic with another. Speaking most urgently to students, teachers, trainers, and athletes, Make It Stick will appeal to all those interested in the challenge of lifelong learning and self-improvement.

313 pages, Hardcover

First published April 14, 2014

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About the author

Peter C. Brown

20 books92 followers
Peter C. Brown is a writer and former management consultant.

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Profile Image for Jeremy.
181 reviews29 followers
August 22, 2014
If only I had known... So I'll let you in on the secret. EVERYTHING you need to know is contained in Chapter 8. The final chapter of the book, naturally. So skip to page 200 and save yourself a LOT of time wandering aimlessy through the groves of academe. Not that there isn't viable information in the preceding seven chapters, mind you, but it's a long slog of background before getting to the good stuff.

I suppose they had to do something to make it more than a pamphlet.

Trust me. Read Chapter 8, and then - if you feel so inclined - you can go back for the tedious build-up. But Chapter 8 really does have some good - and practical - information on how to learn (and how "quick-fixes" like cramming and rote memorization are not true fixes at all).
Profile Image for Amir Tesla.
161 reviews669 followers
January 27, 2019
Learning faster, and remembering more, is a lofty goal endeared by any ambitious individual. Unfortunately, our default way of learning is terribly ineffective.

Refer to Full summary of make it stick: science of successfull learning

Also how I use the techniques of this book to read faster and remember more

Perhaps this has happened to you as well, asking a person’s name just to forget it a minute later. What’s worse is that we think to ourselves, gosh, I have a very bad memory. Just if I was a bit smarter…

After reading more than 15 books on learning and pick-performance, I’ve noticed a recurring pattern: when it comes to learning, it doesn’t matter what kind of brain you have, what matters is how you use it.

In fact, from Einstein, Mozart to Elon Musk, studies have demonstrated that world-class performers and prodigies reach that level of achievement due to the learning methods, practicing strategies, and the mindset they have, and not something that they are born with.

I. What you will learn in this review
1. How our intuition fools us into adopting ineffective learning strategies.
2. 5 practical learning strategies proven by neuroscientists to significantly amplify your learning speed.
Click for full summary of key points

II. The Illusion of learning
Learning is deeper and more durable when it’s effortful. Learning that’s easy is like writing in sand, here today and gone tomorrow.
This is how most of us initially study and try to learn: We start reading the text, underline and highlight the material.

Then we dedicate our time to rereading them. We get fluent in the text and terminology which feels like learning.

This familiarity with a text which is the product of rereading creates an illusion of learning. This fluency with the text is a misleading indicator of what you have learned, and how much you will remember.

This way of learning is often very easy and comfortable. In fact, many teachers believe that learning should be made easier and faster.

This intuition that leads us to rereading strategy is compelling and difficult to ignore for two reasons. First, as we keep repeating, we notice an increase in our performance. Second, we fail to notice that this improvement is coming from our short-term memory and will fade away quickly.

III. The 5 Learning Strategies for Super Learning

1. Retrieval
In essence, retrieval is trying to remember what you have already studied or learned.

This is one of the most effective techniques of learning that burns the material into your brain. This should be the core strategy of your learning.

How to use retrieval practice: When you study lecture notes or read a book, pause periodically and ask yourself:

1. What are the key ideas?
2. What terms or ideas are new to me?
3. How would I define them?
4. How do the ideas relate to what I already know?

The harder it is to recall a new learning from memory, the greater the benefits.

How it feels: Compared to rereading, retrieval and self-quizzing may feel uncomfortable and frustrating especially when the new learning is hard to recall. The irony is that this is exactly how you actually know that it’s working and you are in deep learning mode.

2. Space out Your Retrieval Practice
Spaced practice means leaving a considerable time between your practicing sessions.

How to use spaced Retrieval: Establish a schedule for self-quizzing sessions with some time to elapse between each session. How much time?

Depends on the material. If you’re trying to remember words, names, faces, etc., practice the retrieval within a few minutes after the first encounter.

New material from a text must be revisited within a day or so of your first encounter with it. After the second visit, you would need to let at least one week to pass before the next rehearsal.

What your intuition tells you to do: If you’re like me, your intuition might convince you to dedicate stretches of time to mass practice; that is, single-mindedly engaging with repetitive practice until you pass out.

Why spaced repetition is effective? When you leave some space between your retrieval practice or self-quizzing, some material is already forgotten.

At this stage, when trying to recall, you are reconstructing what you have already studied from your long-term memory. This effort engages more neuronal pathways and strengthens the memory traces.

Click for full summary of key points

تقریبا همه متودهایی رو که ما برای خوندن و یاد گرفتن استفاده می کنیم رو این کتاب اثبات می کنه ضعیف و ناکارآمد هستن. از سیستم هایلات کردن گرفته تا مثلا تمرین کردن مسلط شدن به تکنیک های مختلف به صورت ترتیبی و ...
توی این کتاب موثرترین تکنیک های یادگیری رو که علم عصب شناسی و علوم شناختی مغز تا به حال بهش رسیده رو یاد می گیرید که مختصر و مفید این اصول یادگیری شامل موارد زیر می شن:

1. Practice Retrieving New Learning From Memory
بازیابی، یعنی به یاد آوردن چیزایی که یاد گرفتین از طریق کوییز گرفتن از خودتون. هر وقت تلاش می کنید که مطلبی که یاد گرفتین رو "دقیق" به خاطر بیارین، رشته های عصبی مرتبط با اون موضوع رو به شدت قوی تر می کنید به یاد آوردن اون مطلب براتون سریای بعد بسیار راحت تر می شه.

هر وقت کتابی یا مطلبی دارید می خونید هر از چند صفحه ای تامل کنید و به خودتون بگید خوب تا الان چی یاد گرفتم. شخصا این کار رو خیلی وقته انجام می دم و واقعا اثر عجیب غریبی داره تو هک کردن اطلاعات روی مغز نازنینم.
When reading, pause periodically to ask yourself questions like: What are the key ideas? What terms or ideas are new to me? How would I define them? How do the ideas relate to what I already know? Use quizzing to identify areas of weak mastery, and focus your studying to make them strong.
تحقیق پشت تحقیق نشون می دن که این کار بسیار بسیار موثرتر بازخوانی همون متن هست. بازخوانی بزرگترین عیبش اینه که به آدم توهم یادگیری می ده و تنها با کوییز گرفتن از خود این حباب توهم می ترکه و متوجه می شیم چقد داغونیم.

2. Space out your retrieval practice
اصل دوم می گه بین تمریناتتون یک فاصله ای در نظر بگیرید و دلیلش اینه که کلا هرچی فرآیند یادگیری تلاش و سختی بیشتری پشتش باشه موندگاری اون هم بیشتری. اما چقدر زمان بین تمرینات باید در نظر بگیریم؟ بستگی به مبحث داره. اگر می خواین یک سری اسم وچهره و عدد به خاطر بسپارید، چند دقیقه بعد از اولین برخوردتون با اونا باید عمل به یاد آوردنشون رو تمرین کنید. مباحث درسی بهتره یکی دو روز فاصله باشه برای اولین تمرین یا سلف کوییز.

3. Interleave the Study of different problem types
این اصل خیلی اصطلاحا کَونتِر اینتوییتیو هست، یعنی با غریزمون همخونی نداره. این اصل می گه به صورت خطی مطالب رو یاد نگیرید بلکه ادغامشون کنید. یعنی مثلا اگر می خواین تیراندازی یاد بگیرید، اینجوری نباشه که بیاین هزارتا تیر به اهداف تو فاصله 100 متری بزنید بعد که ماهر شدین برید اهداف در فاصله 150 متری رو بزنید. بلکه باید بیاید به طور تصادفی اهداف تو فاصله های مختلف رو هم زمان توی تمرین هاتون قرار بدین.

آزمایشای جالبیم درین خصوص انجام شده. مثلا به یه گروه تمرین انداختن توپ توی سبد در فاصله 3 و 5 متری رو می دن. و یک گروه منحصرا روی انداختن توپ توی سبد در فاصله 4 متری تمرکز می کنن. بعد بین این دو گروه مسابقه برگزار می کنن، اون هم با سبدهایی در فاصله 4 متری. جالب اینکه اون گروهی که توی فاصله های 3 و 5 متری داشتن عملکرد بسیار بهتری داشتن نسبت به اون گروه که مشخصا تمرینشون با سبد در فاصله 4 متری بوده.

4. Elaboration
اصل چهارم یکی از تکنیک های یادگیری ریچارد فاینمن برنده نوبل فیزیک هست. ایلبوریشن یا تشریح رو به فرآیند پیدا کردن لایه های دیگه از مفهوم در یک موضوع مورد مطالعه می گن. مثلا برقرار کردن یک سری لینک و ارتباط بین مطالبی که خوندین و یادگرفتین با مطالبی که از قبل بلد بودین. این موضوع به شدت توی موندگاری اون موضوع توی ذهنتون تاثیر می ذاره.
هرچی لینک هایی که بین موضوع جدید و مطالبی که از قدیم تو ذهن دارید برقرار می کنید بیشتر باشه، موندگاریشون بیشتر و به خاطر آوردنشونم بسیار راحت تر میشه. تازه موضوع به همینجا ختم نمی شه، این سبک یادگیری توی بلند مدت باعث ایجاد یک شبکه دانش پیچیده توی مغزتون می شه که اونجا ایده های رنگ و وارنگ شروع می کنن به تراوش کردن.

5. Generation
اصل پنجم تولید هست، به این معنی که شما قبل از خوندن یا شروع به یادگیری کردن یک مطلبی، سعی کنی یک سری طوالات طرح کنی و به اونا پاسخ بدین. به همین خاطر توی آموزش های حرفه معمولا یه بخش به عنوان پری-کوییز همیشه وجود داره.
انجام اینکار مثل شخم زدن زمین می مونه که اون رو حسابی آماده کاشت و برداشت می کنه. ((الان اینجا من ایلَبوریشن انجام دادم مثلا) :D

6. Reflection
اصل ششم، ترکیبی از اصل اول و چهارم هست.
یعنی مدت زمانی رو اختصاص بدین به اینکه فکر کنید احیرا چه چیزایی یاد گرفتین و از خودتون سوال بپرسید. چه چیزایی خوب پیش رفتن؟ چه چیزایی رو می تونم بهتر کنم؟ این مطالب یادآور چه مطالب دیگه ای هستن برای من؟ برای یادگیری بهتر چه مطالب دیگه ای رو باید فرا بگیرم>؟

7. Calibration
اصل هفتم که خیلیم مهمه همون توهم زدایی خودمون هست. کلا نویسنده ها می گن دلیلی که اغلب مردم به صورت حرفه ای از این تکنیکا استفاده نمی کنن، رجوع کردن به غریزشون هست. مثلا فکر می کنن چند بار روخوانی کردن از روی یک متن باعث می شه اون مطلب رو بهتر یاد بگیرن. یا مثلا یه موضوعی رو تمرین کنن بعد برن سراغ موضوع بعد مطالب رو عمیق تر یاد می گیرن. اصل هفتم می گه به صورت دوره ای از خودتون کوییز بگیرید یا تمرینات جدیدی انجام بدین و سعی کنید کاراییتون رو با وقتی که این اصول یادگیری رو به کار می گیرید مقایسه کنید.

کلام آخر
این کتاب رو شدیدا و عمیقا به همه اونایی که می خوان چیز جدیدی یاد بگیرین از درس گرفته تا یک رشته ورزشی یا موسیقی توصیه می کنم. دلیلش هم اینه که این اصول رو شخصا خیلی به کار گرفتم و واقعا انقلابی توی سیستم یاد گیریم و پیچیده کردن ذهنم ایجاد کرده و دوم اینکه کلیه اصول با انجام آزمایش ها و تحقیقات منسجم به دست اومدن که حسابی قابل اتکا هستن.

Happy thriving my friends.
Profile Image for Patrik.
93 reviews29 followers
September 2, 2014
A very convincing and readable book about how to better learn and, as an extension, how to better teach. Two psychologists and (thankfully) one writer present the latest research on learning and, in so doing, refutes some of our most popular learning techniques (such as 'practice, practice, practice' and my favorite 'read and reread'). At the end of the book, the following eight concrete techniques are offered:
1. Retrieving - practice retrieving new (and old) learning (self-quizzing).
2. Spacing - space out your retrieval practice, leave time to forget in between practice sessions.
3. Interleaving - alternate working on different problems facilitates spacing and forgetting (making learning more difficult, which improves learning).
4. Elaboration - try to find additional layers of meaning in the new material.
5. Generation - attempt to answer a question or solve a problem before looking at the answer (experiential learning).
6. Reflection - a combination of retrieval practice and elaboration that adds layers to learning new material. Ask your self questions.
7. Calibration - to avoid various cognitive illusions, use an objective instrument to adjust your sense of what you know and don't know.
8. Mnemonic devices - build memory palaces to help yourself retrieve what you have learned.

I will aim to incorporate several of these ideas into my courses - mainly through (1) generation, (2) elaboration, and (3) retrieval practice through frequent, predictable, low-stakes "testing" (including interleaving). I will not be promoting mnemonic devices...
Profile Image for Morgan Blackledge.
578 reviews1,957 followers
February 22, 2020
What's the first thing you (and everyone else) does when you're trying to learn a subject or text? Odds are good you read, highlight sections and then re-read the text. We all do that because it feels like we're learning.

If this is you, than according to researchers who split test different learning strategies and compare results, you're wasting your precious time and energy and there's a much more effective way to learn. It's more difficult, but it's way more effective and takes way less time. Curious? Than by all means, read on.

I remember when I was taking cognitive psychology and learning theory towards the end of my graduate training. The classes essentially described how people learn in very precise terms.

Although the information in the classes was not presented in a prescriptive form (meaning they didn't tell you what to do in order to learn better). It wasn't difficult to convert the descriptive information into prescriptive practices.

Applying these learning techniques informed by the hard science of cognitive psychology and learning theory revolutionized my study habits and dramatically improved my learning outcomes.

I remember asking my professor "why in the fuck didn't they teach us this at the beginning of the degree? I would have had better test scores and information retention with much less time and energy spent studying". He a looked back at me with the grim tired face of someone who had done battle with university bureaucrats for the better part of two decades and he said "if you manage to figure that out let me know".

Anyway, that's called counterfactual thinking (e.g. if I only knew then what I know now etc.) and it's a classic cognitive distortion, one of many maladaptive or counter productive ways of thinking identified in cognitive behavioral therapy, and it's pretty much a giant waste of thinking.

The important point being that the findings of cognitive psychology and learning theory are like gold for people who teach, or for people who really need/want/love to learn, or for people who are just plain curious about how the mind works.

If there were a book out there that was fun to read and that distilled all of these important findings and ideas into a potent short form, wouldn't you want to rush right out and get it? If the answer is yes, then I've got great news for you. Make It Stick is exactly that.

So if your response is "sure, I'll put that on my huge stack of reading that I'd like to do but probably won't", than I'd at least like to give you some of the key ideas.

Cognitive Multipliers:

At this point in my life I feel comfortable enough with my masculinity to admit that I used to play Dungeons & Dragons (D&D). That being said, I think I'd like to take this opportunity to come out of the closet and admit to my friends family and to the world that, at age 47, I still spend way too much time playing a turn-based computer war game called Civilization (Civ).

In Civ there's this really important core concept called cultural multipliers. They are these technologies that you can develop that don't just add to the power of your civilization, they multiply the power of your civilization.

Well it turns out that your brain has somewhat equivalent little hacks called cognitive multipliers. They are simple little cognitive reframes and habits that can literally multiply your learning ability. The book is all about cognitive multiplayers. Here's a short list to (hopefully) spark your curiosity.

1: Embracing a growth mindset:

Mindset is a simple idea discovered by Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck.

In a fixed mindset, people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits. They spend their time trying to demonstrate their intelligence or talent instead of developing them. They also believe that talent alone creates success without effort.

In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through hard work. This view engenders a love of learning and resilience essential for accomplishing just about anything of value.

Mindset all boils down to the following. Those who attribute failure to lack of innate ability become hopeless in the face of challenges. Those who attribute failure to insufficient effort double down and try harder in the face of challenges. Challenges are seen as opportunities to grow and improve skills.

Adopting a growth mindset is probably the single most important cognitive multiplier. It sounds easy but it takes a lot of self monitoring in order to ferret out and replace all the subtle little ways we all think fixed.

2: practicing like an expert:

It turns out that the effort of retrieving knowledge strengthens its staying power, and enhances your ability to retrieve it in the future. The authors advise periodically testing and strengthening new knowledge through self testing. The book goes into extensive detail about what the very best ways to self test are. So get it and read it if you want to know and trust me you do.

3: constructing memory cues:

The Method of loci (loci is Latin for "places") is a mnemonic device popular with ancient Roman and Greek orators (they needed it because didn't have power point back then).

Basically, it's a method of memory enhancement which uses visualization to organize and recall information.

In this technique you memorizes the layout of a location with a lot of different discrete places, like a street that you walk down a lot.

When you're trying to remember a set of items (like cards in a deck) you mentally "walk" through the location and commit item to each one of the places " e.g. the ace of clubs is by the Starbucks, the 3 of diamonds is by the old Blockbuster, the 5 of spades is by the gas station. Retrieval of items is achieved by imagining walking back through the place, allowing it to activate the desired items.

It sounds like B.S. but it works. If you've ever seen those dudes who can memorize like four decks of cards, this is how they all do it.

Liberally using mnemonic devices such as the method of loci and using other ways of associating new knowledge with vivid and unusual mental imagery is highly effective (for reasons described in detail in the book).

Roy G. Biv is the classic mnemonic for remembering the color spectrum. You imagine a guy in a rainbow colored outfit who's name is Roy G. Biv. It's actually an anagram for: Red, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet. It's lame as hell, but it works.

In anatomy, the sagittal plane is the vertical plane dividing the body into right and left halves. My anatomy instructor told us the STUPIDEST but extremely effective mnemonic device for remembering it, and I will never forget it.

You hold out you hand like you're shaking hands, and with a vertical up and down karate chop gesture you say "sagittal to meet you". I know it's asinine, but it works. And those types of devices tend to be extremely effective in general.

4: elaboration and personalization:

Elaboration is the process of finding additional layers of meaning in new material. Its what's meant when we say "let's unpack that idea".

It can be extremely useful to relate the material to a personal experience or to something you already know, explaining the idea to someone else, or explaining how it relates to your life outside of class.

For example, one way to remember the principal of angular momentum in physics is the visualize the way a figure skaters spin velocity increases when she draws her arms closer to her body. But an even better way is to think of when you were playing on merry go round playground equipment when you were a kid, and it went faster when you pulled yourself from the outside to the center as it spun.

5: generation:

All that means is trying to solve a problem or answer a question before getting the actual answer. Even if you don't get the right answer it is extremely helpful for learning the right answer when you hear it.

The bottom line is, learning is not a passive process. It takes effort. And the more effortful the practice, the more effective. But you also have to be a smart weasel. So I'm shit is proven to work better than others.

I'm literally butchering these important points. So why don't I call it quits and just strongly suggest that you read this tremendously important helpful book.
Profile Image for John Martindale.
750 reviews81 followers
July 29, 2014
I am an audiobooks junkie and often soon after I finish a book, I go to the computer to write a review, but my mind feels completely void—it seems like I completely forget all I just heard, even the fascinating tidbits. All I feel left with is an impression concerning whether I liked the book or not. Since there is this mental blockage, most of the time I just don't write much of a review and consider those things I wanted to share, lost. Most of my life it has seemed the majority of what was imprinted in my mind was written with disappearing ink.

But thank heaven, I download this audiobook “Make it Stick”!! The authors taught me that my initial blankness and difficulty recalling, is actually normal and is an import part in the learning process. That is, if I am diligent to search the recesses of my mind until I recall some of the content. Indeed it's this difficult act of retrieving, that will help cement it in our brain. An example a teacher gave her students was how our mind is like a forest, and the information is lost somewhere in it. The first time we go looking for it can be frustrating and difficult. But the next time will be easier and also will begin to form a trail, making it easier to find our way to the information in the future.

One of my biggest hindrances to learning has been my foolish wish that learning might be easy—a stroll through a park. I've wanted to be able to be passive recipient, merely reading or listening, exerting no effort beyond this. But indeed, as the authors point out, merely listening or reading and re-reading material, though giving a sense of familiarity with it, will only result in the illusion of knowledge. We will feel like we know something, but there is no way to know what we actually don't know, unless we're quizzed or questioned. The authors make it clear that re-reading, listening again to a lecture and reviewing our notes, though it may help up past a test the following day, will not result in long term knowledge or mastery.
So yes, as I mentioned, if we want it to stick, we must recall, recall, recall. When we find it difficult, we must resist the temptation to just going back and glancing again at what we previously read, for this would be merely re-reading. We must first try hard to remember and only after this go back to the book/answers/notes and fill in the blanks and make sure we recalled correctly. But it's not merely searching the crannies of the mind and located something, we must reflect on it after finding it. We need to elaborate on the concepts, expressing them in our own words and thinking up examples and analogies, also we should seek to relate and connect the material with our past knowledge. All of this may seem like hard work, but the authors mentioned if learning ain't hard, it's like writing in the sand, it will all be washed away.

Even though this requires effort. It is exciting to know that one of the best ways of learning is to actual seek to recall and reflect on the material. And just think, this can be done anywhere, it's like I can be learning and encoding things I had read, throughout the day.

The authors point out, how testing, is not so much merely for making sure we learned the material, but testing is an excellent way to learn it. There was a study they mentioned in which one group spent an amount of time cramming, and another spent the same amount of time recalling and quizzing themselves, and then after an extended period of time, when tested, the crammers lost 50% while the recallers only lost 13% of the information they learned. The same amount of time was spent and recalling was obviously far more effective. This is encouraging.

They also wrote a good deal about interweaving (I think that is what they called it.) examples would be things like the batter in baseball will do better if he practices with all kinds of pitches, rather than mastering curve balls, fast balls, etc... one at a time. Though the latter will seem more productive, it will give the illusion of mastery. The authors gave the example of those learning to associate artist names with their paintings, and how it's best to skip around, instead of spending much time on anyone. I suppose learning is in school is often like A-B-C-D-E-F-G, but real life is F-A-C-D-G-B-E.

The Authors wrote on the importance of understanding the growth mentality, instead of thinking intelligence is static. If kids are told they're smart or that they're “a natural” it can have disastrous results, but if they're praised for diligence and hard work, this will often bear good fruit. People need to understand the brain is plastic and no matter the amount of intelligence we were endowed with, we can through tons of practice and work, master many, many things.

But yeah, there is more, but the review is long enough. I will mention I employed the concepts they taught me as I went through the book. I likely spent almost as much time reflecting on it (out loud) while on walks, as I did listening to the book. And yes, I think reflecting on it several hours benefited me much more than merely re-listening to the audiobook.
Profile Image for Ilib4kids.
1,100 reviews3 followers
September 7, 2015
370.1523 BRO
CD 370.1523 BRO

Similar book "How We Learn: The Surprising Truth About When, Where, and Why It Happens" which focus on history instead of giving practice tips

Ideas I learn most useful:
1. Learn more by testing than re-reading; re-reading create illusion of mastery.
2. Spacing and interleaving are more useful than sequential learning and mass practices.
3. Growth mindset is extremely important not only in learning, but in everything. Setback and mistakes are only ways to success. Do not afraid of them, as a way to judge your ability as so many people snare in this trap.
3. Memory is available vs. Accessible (Means what we have learned in the life time still stored in our memory, but not accessible at any given time. Memory need to be able accessible must have some cues in order to activate them)

px 2 primary learning principle: spaced repetition of key ideas; interleaving of different but related ideas.

p3 Claims we make in this book
1. Learning is deeper and more durable when it's effortful
2. We are poor judges of when we are leaning well and when we're not.
3. Rereading text and massed practice ... least productive.
4. Retrieval practice - recalling facts or concepts ..form memory is more effective than review by rereading. e.g Flashcards
5. Space out practice at a task and get a little rusty between sessions, or interleave of two or more subjects...produce longer lasting learning.
6. Trying to solve a problem before being taught the solution leads to a better learning.
7.The popular notion that you learn better when you receive instruction in a form consistence with your preferred learning style, e.g auditory learner is not supported.
8. Extracting the underlying principles or rules that differentiate types of problem...This skill is better acquired through interleaved and varied practice than massed practice. e.g interleaving practice at computing the volumes of different kinds of geometric solids.
9. Build mastery when use testing as a tool to identify and bring up areas of weakness.
10.Elaboration is the process of giving new material meaning by expressing it in your own words and connecting it with what you already know.
11. People who learn to extract the key ideas from the new material and organize them into a mental model and connect that model to prior knowledge show an advantage in learning complex mastery.
12. It is true that we start life with gift of our genes, but it's also true that we become capable through the learning... In other words, the elements that shape your intellectual abilities lie to a a surprising extent within your own control...Striving and setbacks...are essential if ..surpass your current level...Making mistake and correcting them build the bridges to advanced learning.

p15 Rereading (rising familiarity with text and fluency ..) can create an illusion of mastery
chap2 To learn, to retrieve

chap3 Mix up your practice (Spaced practice; interleaved practice;Varied practice)
p46 The myth of Massed practice: ..it feel like a productive strategy, ...but most of material will be long forgotten.
p58 Book learning is not enough in these cases; actual hands-on practice is needed.
p62, it's all there: retrieval, spacing, interleaving, variation, reflection, and elaboration.
p65 In interleaving, you don't move from a complete practice of one topic to go to another. You switch before each practice is complete.
p66 One difference, between those who do and don't (learning from experience) is whether they have cultivate the habit of reflection. Reflection is a form of retrieval practice. (what happened? What did I do? How did it work out?), enhanced with elaboration (What would I do differently next time?) --my comment: reflection and elaboration I think is most critical aspects in learning well.

Chap3 Embrace difficulties
Desirable difficulties.: they trigger encoding and retrieval processes that support learning, comprehension,and remembering. If however, the learner does not have the background knowledge or skills to respond to them successful, they become undesirable difficulties. p98
p72 How Learning Occurs: Encoding; Consolidation; Retrieval.
p87 Generation:the act of trying to answer a question or attempting to solve a problem rather than being presented with information or the solution is known as generation.

Chap4 Avoid illusion of knowing
Cause of illusion and memory distortions p109
Hunger for narrative; Imagination inflation; Suggestion; interference; curse of knowledge; feeling of knowing; Fluency illusions; social influence; false consensus effect.
Chap5 Avoid illusion of knowing

Chap6 Get beyond learning styles
p141 On any list of difference that matter most for learning, the level of language fluency and reading abilitywill be at or near the top.
learning styles
p143 Belief in the learning styles credo is pervasive...It is not supported by science, and it instills a corrosive, misguides sense of diminished potential
Neil Fleing VARK
Honey and Mumford's Learning Styles Questionnaire
p145 The premise of learning styles is that we learn better when the mode of presentation matches the particular style in which an individual is best able to learn. This is the critical claim...In 2008, Cognitive psychologist Harold Pashler... were commissioned to conduct a review to determine whether this critical claim is supported by scientific evidence... The answer is NO...Moreover, their review showed that it is more important that the node of instruction match the nature of the subject being taught; visual instruction for geometry and geography...
Fluid intelligence; Crystallized intelligence
p147 Howard Gardner 8 multiple intelligence
p150 Robert Sternberg 3 part of intelligence: Analytical; Creative; Practical

Chap7 Increase your abilities
Carol Dweck Growth Mindset
Anders Ericsson Deliberate Practice"
Memory Cues

Chap8 Make it stick
Learning tips for students
Practice retrieving new learning from memory; Space out your retrieval practice; Interleave the study of different problem types; Elaboration; Generation; Reflection; Calibration; Mnemonic Device.

Tips for teachers p225--239
p228 Bloom's taxonomy classifies cognitive learning in 6 levels: Knowledge; Comprehension; Application; Analysis; Evaluation; Synthesis

p252 We have talked throughout this book about learning, not about education. The responsibility for learning rests with every individual, whereas the responsibility for education rests with institution of society. Education embrace the a world of difficult questions.
Profile Image for Elizabeth Theiss Smith.
297 reviews83 followers
June 12, 2014
From the perspective of a professor with a good 20 years of experience, this book is a gem. The authors use research to demonstrate how students learn best and how teachers can structure courses to facilitate student learning. While I've read many books on teaching, few are as helpful as this one.

For example, frequent recall of recent information cements learning. Teachers can help by providing frequent low stakes quizzes that require students to utilize Bloom's taxonomy. The authors provide basic principles and case studies of each principle in practice.

Well worth reading for teachers and for students working at becoming more effective learners.
Profile Image for Amora.
189 reviews143 followers
March 11, 2023
I can see why so many others enjoyed this book. Common misconception about learning are rebuffed in this book and effective, empirically-proven methods are presented. The authors present several nice stories to go along with the points they’re making!
Profile Image for Dragos Pătraru.
51 reviews2,691 followers
December 31, 2020
Este o carte dintre cele recomandate de unul dintre voi. Un ascultător al podcastului Vocea nației mi-a scris săptămâna trecută, destul de supărat că se vorbește prea puțin despre cum să învățăm. Și că prea puțini oameni își dau seama că de fapt nu știu să învețe. Și mi-a recomandat această carte, Make It Stick. Din fericire, o puteți găsi pe net în variantă pdf. Autorul pleacă de la realitatea că învățarea tradițională - prin citire, recitire și memorare a unor cantități impresionante de informație, plus subliniere și fișe și celelalte metode pe care le-am aplicat cu toții de-a lungul timpului - nu funcționează. În sensul că putem învăța altfel, pentru a reține mult mai multe și pentru a putea aplica efectiv ceea ce învățăm. iar aici autorul introduce testarea, ca armă imbatabilă în procesul de învățare. Adică exact treaba de care fugim cu toții, la școală. Privită altfel, atât de elevi și studenți, cât și de profesori (care folosesc testele pentru a pedepsi, nu pentru a vedea unde ei au predat prost, iar elevii nu au înțeles), testarea ajută la asimilarea pe termen lung a noțiunilor. O altă idee din carte este cea legată de procesul de îmbrățișare a dificultăților. Adică, frate, dacă e prea ușor ce înveți, înseamnă că de fapt nu prea înveți nimic. Foarte mult înveți când încerci să rezolvi o problemă chiar înainte să îți fie predată modalitatea de rezolvare și, desigur, ceea ce tot spun și eu la podcast, îmbrățișați eroarea. Procesul încercare - eroare - învățare - ajustare - încercare nouă este cel mai eficient mod de a învăța, cred eu, iar autorul confirmă asta.
Bun, el merge mult mai departe, ajungând până la metode de antrenare a creierului, răspunzând chiar și la întrebarea dacă IQ-ul poate fi crescut (da). La final, în capitolul Make It Stick, sunt oferite câteva ”tips and tricks”, pentru cei care vor să învețe mai bine și să fie siguri că tot ceea ce studiază le rămâne în minte pe termen lung și pot aplica apoi când au nevoie. De pildă, un sfat pentru studenți este să se testeze chiar în timp ce învață, punându-și întrebări precum: care sunt ideile cheie, ce idei sunt noi pentru mine, cum le-aș defini, cum se leagă ele de ceea ce știu deja.
Una peste alta, chiar dacă scrisă într-un stil mai greoi, Make It Stick este o carte mult mai bună decât Mindshift - învață să înveți altfel, scrisă de Barbara Oakley, pe care am recomandat-o, de asemenea, aici.
Profile Image for David.
19 reviews6 followers
May 14, 2014
This is my new favorite book on learning. The writing is approachable rather than academic, and the content is completely research-based. If you want to learn how to be a better learner, or to help others learn how to be better learners, this is a must-read. A cognitive psychologist friend introduced me to it by gleefully saying, "I have been replaced by a book." Indeed. This is the best book on the science of learning I have ever encountered. I would give it 6 stars if I could.
Profile Image for عبدالرحمن عقاب.
680 reviews767 followers
January 25, 2019
كتاب جميل ومهم، وعرضه سلس وشيق.
يعرض لأهم تلك التقنيات التعلمية التي تزيد من فعاليات التعلم وجعله بإذن الله أكثر رسوخا وإتقانا ونفعا.
قدر الله أن أقرأ هذا الكتاب بعد كتاب how to learn
والذي بدوره يكون أكثر فائدة حين يقرأ بعد هذا الكتاب، ﻷنه يعرض الدراسات والنقاش العلمي الدائر وراء كل نقطة مما اشتمل عليه هذا الكتاب، فيصير توسعا وتفصيلاً وتعمقا .
مما تثبت هذه العلوم (تعلم كيف نتعلم)  الكثير من الخلط والغلط في مفاهيم التعلم التي نشأ عليها المتعلمون وأهاليهم والمعلمون أيضا.
كم أتمنى لو قرأ الآباء والمعلمون هذا الكتاب أو تلخيصا له. ولعلي أقوم بتلخيص الكتابين قريباً إن شاء الله. 
Profile Image for د.أمجد الجنباز.
Author 3 books773 followers
May 18, 2016
يتحدث الكتاب عن طرق الدراسة والتعلم التي تضمن الاحتفاظ على المعلومات وفهمها بأفضل شكل ممكن
الكتاب مبني علي الأبحاث والدراسات وأبحاث الدماغ، وليس ككتب الذاكرة والدراسة التجارية

الكتاب قمة في الروع، ويحوي معلومات صادمة عن طرق الدراسة. فالكثير من طرق الدراسة التي كنا نقوم بها ومقتنعين بها، تبين أنها سيئة جدا في الدراسة وعلى الذاكرة.
Profile Image for Andy.
1,377 reviews467 followers
July 12, 2020
This gibes with my experience as a teacher so I am inclined to believe it without having read any of the original research. The author refers to the science that backs up his points but mainly uses anecdotes. This is a readable and I think useful book about how to help people understand and retain information.
8 reviews1 follower
January 10, 2015
A very interesting subject that is covered thoroughly in this book. Unfortunately, I don't think the authors had enough novel ideas to fill 200 pages. This resulted initially in a lot of repeated information (sometimes almost verbatim), and later in the book losing focus and wandering all over the place. The two paragraph conclusion read like it had been written by a high schooler who suddenly realized she had met the word count requirement. Make it Stick would make an awesome TED Talk or a 3 page blog post, but the authors failed to justify the need for this to be a book.
Profile Image for Milan.
276 reviews2 followers
December 6, 2019
This is a great book on how we learn and how we don’t learn. The three authors provide basic principles of learning with numerous examples. There are 8 chapters in this book which elaborate on these points.

1. Retrieving - practice retrieving what you have learnt.
2. Spacing - leave space between your practice sessions.
3. Interleaving - learn different things, don't get stuck on one topic.
4. Elaboration - find new meaning in what you have learnt.
5. Generation - try to solve a problem before checking the answer.
6. Reflection - think about what you have learnt, ask yourself questions.
7. Calibration - make clear distinction between what you know and don't know.
8. Mnemonic devices - use memory palaces to retrieve what you have learnt.

Some other points that I really liked: Making learning more difficult makes it stick. We learn more by testing than re-reading. The elements that shape our intellectual abilities lie to a surprising extent within our own control. Genes play a role only up to an extent. “It’s not just what you know, but how you practice what you know that determines how well the learning serves you later.”
Profile Image for Oleh Bilinkevych.
259 reviews61 followers
July 8, 2022
Нон-фікш - це перш за все про користь, та про практичне застосування. І ця книга саме з таких! Мало води, багато прикладів та описів наукових досліджень. Без пустопорожньої писанини.
Книга шикарно ілюструє, чому зубріння- це зло, а самоперевірка - святая святих. Чому концентроване навчання - провал, а урізноманітнення тем в навчанні - успіх. Чому важливо проводити рефлексію і які техніки запам'ятовування допоможуть нарешті перетворити інформаційний бардак на зручний каталог знань.
І не менш важливе- без докладених зусиль, ні вроджений талант, ні природнє обдарування не зроблять з вас професіонала. Work, Work і ще раз Work!
Profile Image for Omar.
149 reviews44 followers
July 26, 2015
لا ينفرد الكتاب بمادته ولكنه يحتوي على مراجعة جيدة لآخر الأبحاث في مجال التعلم والذاكرة. مفيد جداً للطلاب للتعرف على الأساليب الأفضل في التعلم والتي تسندها الأبحاث والتعامل مع الصعوبات وكيف أن بعض طرقنا المعتادة في التعلم مثل إعادة القراءة والتلخيص هي طرق توهم بالتعلم أكثر من ما تفيد. في الفصل الأخير خلاصة مادة الكتاب وأمثلة توضيحية يمكن البدء به وقد يغنيك هذا الفصل عن باقي الكتاب .

تُعنى هذه الأساليب بالتعلم بشكل عام سواء كان تعلم مادة دراسية أو تعلم مهارة كالمهارات البدنية، وتتعلق باستخدام الذاكرة لاستظهار معلومة وكذلك بالتدرب على حل مسائل الرياضات مثلاً.
من أهم الأساليب التي يوصى بها:

• الاعتماد على التمرين المستمر للذاكرة بمحاولة استرجاع المعلومات وأهم أساليبه أن تختبر
نفسك عن طريق طرح أسئلة حول المادة، مفيد أن تتوقف لتسأل نفسك حول ما تعلمت في الصفحة أو الصفحات القليلة السابقة .

• لا تستعجل الاطلاع على ما لم تعرفه بل حاول تذكره لأنك حتى في حالة عدم تذكره فإن اطلاعك على المادة بعد ذلك يفيدك أكثر.

باعد بين فترات مراجعة المادة بحيث تكون المراجعة التالية قريبة كبعد يوم والتالية بعد اسبوع والتي تليها بعد شهر. حدد أنت هذه الأوقات بحيث تسمح لقليل من النسيان قبل مراجعة المادة مرة أخرى. في كل مرة تراجع أنت تزيد من مدة الاحتفاظ بالمادة.

المراوحة بين درسين أفضل من اتقان درس قبل الانتقال للآخر مثلاً في الرياضيات حل مسائل درسين مختلفين بأن تأخذ سؤال من درس ثم سؤال من درس آخر أفضل من حل جميع مسائل درس واحد ثم الانتقال لمسائل الدرس التالي، لأن حل مسائل متشابهة يعطي شعور بالاتقان ولكن الواقع أن العقل يستريح مع الاعتياد فيقل التعلم.

التفاعل مع المادة:  بربطها بأمثلة من الواقع، أو بشرح المادة للآخرين، أو بالتشبيه مثل أن تشبه جزيئات الذرة بالمجموعة الشمسية.

• محاولة حل مسألة قبل رؤية الحل، وكذلك التوقف قبل قراءة فصل في كتاب لتوقع ما ستكون مادته.
في موقع رواق مادة فيها معلومات مشابهة لمادة الكتاب:
تعلم كيف تتعلم   
Profile Image for Nathan Moore.
204 reviews39 followers
September 17, 2017
I've read some great books on learning and skill development this year. I've been looking for a book on the subject of learning with a special emphasis on memory and long term retention and this book fit the bill. I read it after reading the Talent Code, which focuses on developing fine motor skills and I've also recently read Outliers which argues that mastery comes from long hours (about 10,000) of focused practice.

In Make it Stick, Brown and others argue that most of the study habits of Americans give only a false impression of learning. Cramming and re-reading are forms of mass practice that feel good but only give short term gains.

The authors argue instead that learning should be focused on recall, spaced repetition, and interleaved with other subjects. You must allow a little forgetting to occur between study sessions.

If you want the major take away from this book... just study with flashcards and space it out.

This book was crucial for me because learning, especially in memory-dependent subjects, has always been labored for me. Deep down, I've always just blamed it on my genes or IQ. Now I feel like I can honestly learn and master anything which is an incredibly exciting sense of empowerment.

I was a little disappointed with the last chapter of the book. During the whole book the authors kept promising they would end the book with specific study tips geared for students, life-long learners, and teachers. As a life-long learner I was extremely disappointed when the study tip I got was geared entirely around a case study for an actor memorizing lines for a play. Not really what I think of when I think of lifelong learners.

Nonetheless, this was an incredibly motivating book. If only I could focus and not want to learn everything!
Profile Image for Overbooked  ✎.
1,495 reviews
July 18, 2016
A really interesting book making the case for non-traditional and often counter-intuitive learning techniques such as continuous testing vs. repetition, spacing and interleaving tasks requiring different efforts rather than sequential practice (i.e. complete mastery before moving onto the next level). The book promotes the concept that easier is not better in learning (i.e. effortful recall produces long lasting results) and analyses the evidence for the scientifically unproven but heavily marketed beliefs on preferred learning styles.

The author states that IQ tests are only a static measure of what it is known and therefore are irrelevant in showing one’s potential for learning. The measure of other types of intelligence leading to important competencies can be missed by standard tests (e.g. street smarts). A better tool is dynamic testing which helps in the discovery one’s weaknesses and focus on improving in those areas (i.e. testing and trial and error strategy).

Many of the examples (hockey, baseball, surgery and medical training, parachute jumping and plane engine failure manoeuvres) were not relevant to me but the arguments and the evidence presented in the book are compelling and convincing. The summary sections at the end of each chapter, “the takeaway” as the author labels them, are useful and so are the last chapter learning tips for students, lifelong learners and teachers. Well worth a read. Recommended.
Profile Image for Oleksandr Golovatyi.
419 reviews36 followers
December 7, 2019
Кращі нотатки з книги:

"Навчання ми називаємо здобуття знань і навичок та готовність дістати їх із пам'яті, щоб розібратися в потенційних проблемах і знайти варіанти розв'язання"

"Три аргументи про навчання: По-перше, воно дає користь, тільки якщо учень запам'ятав і за потреби може застосувати вивчене. По-друге, учитися і запам'ятовувати треба все життя. Хист до навчання допомагає протягом усього життя. По-третє, навчання - це навичка, яка набувається, і найдієвіші стратегії зазвичай зовсім не інтуїтивні."

Тренуй Свій Мозок разом з Readlax (промо-лінк)

"Знання є глибшими і довше зберігаються в пам'яті, коли здобуваються із зусиллями."

"Перечитування тексту та концентроване навчання для опанування нових навичок або знань - мабуть, найулюбленіші стратегії учнів, щоправда, НАЙМЕНШ ПРОДУКТИВНІ."

"ДІСТАВАННЯ інформації (пошук у пам'яті фактів, понять або подій) - ефективніша стратегія навчання, ніж перечитування. Простий приклад - флеш-картки."

"Опрацювання - це метод, за яким учень надає значення новому матеріалу, переказуючи його своїми словами та співвідносячи з тим, що знає. Що більше ви можете пояснити, як нові знання співвідносяться з попереднім, то краще засвоюєте новий матеріал і створюєте зв'язки, які допоможуть згадати його пізніше."

"Нові знання легше засвоюються, коли вставити їх у ширший контекст. Наприклад, що більше фактів з історії вам відомо про ту чи іншу подію, то краще ви її запам'ятаєте."

"Люди, які вміють знаходити основні засади в новому матеріалі та об'єднувати їх у ментальну модель, а потім співвідносити її із попередніми знаннями, майстерніше опановують складний матеріал. Ментальна модель - це подумки створена репрезентація певної зовнішньої реальності."

"Вивчаючи щось нове, ми щоразу змінюємо свій мозок - кожний досвід зберігається в пам'яті."

"Когнітивна психологія - це наука, яка пояснює розумові процеси на основі емпіричних досліджень про те, як люди сприймають інформацію, запам'ятовують і думають."

"Навчання справляє сильніший ефект, коли має значення або коли абстрактне поняття стає конкретним та особистим (!!!)"

"Ілюзія знання - це приклад поганої метакогніції: що ми знаємо про те, що знаємо."

"Рефлексія охоплює кілька когнітивних процесів, які сприяють ефективнішому навчанню: діставання інформації та п��актичних навичок із пам'яті, співвіднесення цієї інформації з новим досвідом та візуалізації й ментальні тренування, які допомагають визначитися, що зробити інакше наступного разу"

"трену��альне пригадування інформації значно краще допомагає закарбувати зання, ніж повторне ознайомлення з оригінальним матеріалом."

"Чому ж інтервальне навчання дієвіше за концентроване? Річ у тім, що для того, щоб нові знання потрапили в довгочасну пам'ять, потрібен процес консолідації, протягом якого сліди пам'яті (репрезентації нових знань у мозку) зміцнюються, набувають значення і поєднуються з попереднім знанням. Цей процес триває кілька годин, а може, і кілька днів. Швидкі заняття орієнтовані на короткочасну пам'ять. А щоб надійно опанувати матеріал, потрібен час на ментальні тренування та інші процеси консолідації. Саме тому інтервальне навчання краще спрацьовує. Зусилля, що вимагаються для діставання інформації з пам'яті після того, як вивчене призабулося, дають повторний запуск консолідації, дедалі зміцнюючи пам'ять."

"знання, отримані завдяки концентрованому, легшому для мозку навчанню, закодовуються в простій чи то вбогій репрезентації, а знання, здобуті завдяки урізноманітненим і складнішим заняттям, що напружують мозок, закодовуються в гнучкішій репрезентації, підхожій для ширшого застосування."

"Інтервали між навчанням, порційне "споживання" знань і можливість осмислити вивчене в перервах укріплює знання і пам'ять, забезпечуючи силу вкоріненої звички."

"сон має важливе значення для закріплення інформації в пам'яті, тому між заняттями повинна минути щонайменше доба."

"чергування та урізноманітнені заняття допомагають виходити за межі заучування здобувати концептуальні знання вищого рівня, уміти їх застосовувати і напрацьовувати глибшу й надійнішу базу знань."

"Рефлексія - це те саме діставання інформації з пам'яті (Що сталося? Що я зробив? Що з цього вийшло?), підкріплене опрацюванням (Що можна зробити інакше наступного разу?)"

"Що відбувається під час навчання? Кодування. Консолідація. Діставання."

"Ваш мозок конвертує інформацію в хімічні й електричні реакції, які формують ментальну репрезентацію побачених шаблонів. Цей процес називається кодуванням, а нові репрезентації в мозку - слідами пам'яті."

"Процес, за якого ментальні репрезентації зміцнюються для довгочасної пам'яті, називається консолідацією. Нові знання нестійкі: їхнє значення ще не повністю сформувалося, тому легко змінюється. У процесі консолідації мозок реорганізовує і стабілізує сліди пам'яті. Це може тривати кілька годин або довше та вимагає ретельної обробки нового матеріалу... Попередні знання є обов'язковою умовою для того, щоб мозок міг надати значення новій інформації, а формування зв'язків між ними - важлива функція консолідації."

"Недостатньо прагнути запам'ятати матеріал - треба вміти дістати його з пам'яті за потреби (Процес діставання)"

"Людина здатна засвоїти практично необмежену кількість нових знань, якщо вони співвідносяться з тими, що вже є. Будь-яке навчання залежить від попереднього, тож що більше ми вивчаємо, то більше створюємо зв'язків для подальшого здобування знань. (!!!)"

"Зусилля для реконструкції вивченого задіюють реконсолідацію і забезпечують глибокі знання."

"Коли людина приділяє кілька хвилин, щоб повторити вивчене на уроці (чи засвоєне з досвіду) і влаштувати самоопитування, це називається рефлексією."

"Страх перед провалами отруює навчальний процес, змушуючи боятися експериментів і ризиків, без яких не буває поступу."

"Оперативна пам'ять - це обсяг інформації, яку людина здатна втримати в голові, працюючи над завданням, особливо коли щось відволікає. Зазвичай що потужніша оперативна пам'ять, то вищий IQ."

"Навчальний процес відбувається щонайменше в три етапи. Початкове кодування інформації закладається в короткочасній оперативній пам'яті, перш ніж консолідуватися в цілісну репрезентацію, збережену в довгостроковій. Консолідація реорганізовує й стабілізує сліди пам'яті, надає їм значення та утворює зв'язки між колишнім досвідом і знанням, збереженим в довгостроковій пам'яті. Діставання інформації з пам'яті оновлює знання й дає змогу застосовувати їх за потреби."

"Знання завжди грунтується на попередніх знаннях. Ми інтерпретуємо і запам'ятовуємо події, формуючи зв'язки з уже відомою нам інформацією."

"Можливості дов��очасної пам'яті практично безмежні: що більше знаєш, то більше зв'язків для того, щоб додавати нові знання."

"Пам'ять - це реконструкція. Ми не в змозі пам'ятати кожний аспект події, тому пам'ятаємо елементи, що мають для нас найбільше емоційне значення, заповнюємо прогалини власними подробицями, що співвідносяться з нашим наративом. Але водночас помиляємось."

"Інфляція уяви - це коли люди, яких попросили яскраво уявити подію, пізніше вірять, що ця подія справді сталася."

"Ще один різновид ілюзії пам'яті - сугестія, зо залежить від того, як поставлено запитання. Інший розлад пам'яті - інтерференція."

"Знайома інформація може викликати оманливе відчуття знання."

"Ілюзії вільного володіння виникають через схильність людей плутати вільне орієнтування в тексті з вивченням."

"Наша пам'ять також зазнає соціального впливу, бо узгоджується з пам'яттю людей, які нас оточують... Зворотний бік ефекту соціального впливу - схильність людей припускати, що інші поділяють їхні переконання. Це називається ефектом хибного консенсусу."

"Тренуйся, немов граєш, і тоді гратимеш так, як тренувався."

"Іноді найефективнішим фідбеком для корегування суджень про те, що ви знаєте і чого не знаєте, є ваші помилки. (!!)"

"Якщо скласти перелік особливостей, які найдужче впливають на навчання, на першому місці буде рівень володіння мовою і техніка читання. (!!!)"

"За моделею VARK, розробленою Нілом Флемінгом, слід виокремлювати такі види сприйняття інформації: візуальний (V), аудіальний (A), читання (R) і кінетичний (K), тобто через рухи, доторки й активне дослідження. Згідно з Флемінгом, VARK визначає тільки один аспект стилю навчання людини, що загалом охоплює 18 параметрів, зокрема температурний режим, освітлення, харчування, біоритми та індивідуальну роботу або групові заняття."

"Одна з поширених моделей, заснована на дослідженнях Кеннета й Ріти Данн, визначає шість аспектів стилю навчання людини: середовищний, емоційний, соціологічний, перцептуальний, фізіологічний і психологічний."

"Дослідники дійшли висновку, що важливіше, шоб метод викладання відповідав предмету, який викладається: візуальний - для геометрії і географії, вербальний - для поезії тощо."

"Сучасні психологи загалом погоджуються, що люди мають щонайменше два типи інтелекту. Рухомий інтелект - це здатність міркувати, зауважувати взаємозв'язки, мислити абстрактно і втримувати інформацію в пам'яті під час роботи над певним завданням; кристалізований інтелект - це накопичені людиною знання про світ і процедури або ментальні моделі, сформовані на основі попередніх знань і досвіду. Укупі ці два типи інтелекту дають змогу вчитися, мислити й розв'язувати задачі."

"За гіпотезою Говарда Гарднера люди мають аж вісім типів інтелекту: логіко-математичний, просторовий, лінгвістичний, кінестетичний, музичний, міжособистісний, внутрішньоособистісний, натуралістичний."

"логіко-математичний інтелект - здатність до критичного мислення, оперування цифрами й абстрактними поняттями тощо."

"просторовий інтелект - тривимірне сприйняття і здатність візуалізувати за допомогою внутрішнього зору"

"лінгвістичний інтелект - здатність працювати зі словами й мовами."

"кінестетичний інтелект - фізична спритність і здатність контролювати тіло."

"музичний інтелект - чутливість до звуків, ритмів, тонів і музики"

"міжособистісний інтелект - здатність "читати" інших людей та ефективно взаємодіяти"

"внутрішньоособистісний інтелект - здатність розуміти себе й оцінювати свої знання, уміння та ефективність"

"натуралістичний інтелект - здатність розрізняти природне середовище і пристосовуватись до нього (наприклад, такий інтелект має садівник, мисливець або кухар)"

"Роберт Стернберг запропонував теорію про три типи інтелекту. Аналітичний інтелект - це здатність розв'язувати задачі, зокрема типові задачі на тестах; творчий інтелект - це здатність синтезувати й застосовувати знання і навички в нових і незвичних ситуаціях; практичний інтелект - це здатність адаптуватися до повсякденного життя, розумит, як чинити за певних умов, і діяти;"

"Важливішим за IQ є дисципліна, сила волі та мислення, націлене на зростання, які сповнюють вірою в можливості, розвивають творче мислення і наполегливість, необхідні для серйозного навчання та успішності (!!!)"

"стати професіоналом може кожна людина зі звичайними обдаруванням��, якщо має для цього МОТИВАЦІЮ, ЧАС і ДИСЦИПЛІНУ. (!)"

"Мнемотехніки - це ментальні інструменти, які допомагають утримати інформацію в пам'яті завдяки орієнтирам для швидкого пригадування."

"Рефлексія - це сукупність діставання інформації з пам'яті та опрацювання, що нашаровують знання й зміцнюють навички."

"Калібрування - це коли студент узгоджує свою думку про те, що знає і чого не знає, з об'єктивним фідбеком, щоб уникнути ілюзії знання."

"Мнемотехніки допомагають діставати вивчене з пам'яті і втримувати в голові великий обсяг інформації"

"завжди читати матеріал перед лекцією (!)"

"навчання - це важка праця, а зусилля примножують інтелектуальні здібності."

"Залучення працівників - це стиль управління, що грунтується на довірі й готовності спілкуватися"

Книга - суперключ для розвитку мозку. Тренуй Свій Мозок разом з Readlax

Readlax - ігри для мозку та читання
Profile Image for Nelson Zagalo.
Author 9 books320 followers
February 19, 2017
"Make it Stick" é um livro de divulgação científica que procura dar a corpo a um conjunto de teorias desenvolvidas por dois professores de psicologia (Henry L. Roediger e Mark A McDaniel) que ao longo de várias décadas estudaram o modo como criamos memórias. O terceiro autor (Peter C. Brown) é especialista em storytelling, e contribuiu aqui especificamente para o desenho da apresentação dos resultados desse estudo. A ideia central de toda a teorização que percorre todo o discurso apresentado no livro é o da Recuperação de Memórias (“Memory Retrieval”), de que já aqui tinha falado a propósito da leitura dos Cânones. Uma técnica suportada por dezenas de estudos empíricos que demonstram a sua relevância e pervasividade no largo espectro da aprendizagem. O conceito assenta na lógica biológica que regula a construção de memórias a nível neuronal.

Assim, precisamos de primeiro compreender que as memórias que possuímos são conjuntos de associações de nós neuronais, de ligações entre neurónios. Quando experienciamos algo — ao vivo, lendo, vendo, ouvindo — o nosso cérebro produz novas ligações entre neurónios que dão conta de imagens mentais que nós chamamos quando queremos recordar alguma coisa. Ou seja, quando jogamos xadrez e pegamos no cavalo, o nosso cérebro recupera a ideia de que este apenas se pode movimentar em L, e deste modo ajuda-nos a realizar a ação de movimentação da peça no tabuleiro. Nós podemos recordar a imagem mental do movimento em L, porque anteriormente a isso nos foi ensinado — explicado em palavras, ou visto em ação. A questão que se coloca, é, como é que nos lembramos que o cavalo se deve mover em L? E é a esta questão que o livro responde.

Não basta alguém explicar-nos em palavras ou atos, como se move o cavalo em L. Para que no fim-de-semana seguinte a ter aprendido a jogar, eu possa saber, ou seja aceder à memória do movimento do cavalo de xadrez, eu preciso de “exercitar” essa mesma memória, preciso de a recuperar várias vezes durante a semana. É importante que dentro da minha cabeça eu continue a “chamar” a memória, para manter vivas as relações de nós neuronais que edificam a imagem mental do movimento do cavalo. Se ao longo da semana não o fizer, as ligações neuronais criadas aquando da explicação de como se joga acabam por se desfazer, ou seja, acabarei por simplesmente esquecer.

Se o chamar da memória é importante, existe algo ainda mais importante, o modo como é chamada, ou dito de forma mais literal, recuperada. “Make It Stick” dedica-se fundamentalmente a explicar esse processo de recuperação, explicando os modos como podemos tornar as memórias mais fortes e sustentáveis no tempo. E esses modos, os melhores, não são aquilo que muitos de nós esperávamos, não são aquilo que nos ensinaram durante décadas de escola, não são nem atrativos nem intuitivos. O melhor resumo, surge na explicação de uma professora quase no final do livro:

"Eu não consigo dizer-lhe quantas vezes os alunos vêm ter comigo, e me mostram os seus livros com sublinhados e destacados em quatro cores diferentes. Então eu digo-lhes: "eu posso dizer que vocês têm trabalhado imenso e que realmente querem ser bem sucedidos nesta cadeira porque vocês tem azul e amarelo e laranja e verde marcados nos vossos livros”. Mas é também quando tenho de lhes dizer: “que todo o tempo gasto com o livro depois da primeira leitura foi um desperdício.” E eles dizem: "Como é isso possível?" Ao que respondo: "O que vocês tem que fazer é: vocês leem um pouco, e depois têm que se testar a vós mesmos”, mas eles não sabem como fazer isso.
Então eu modelo as aulas para que possam fazer isso mesmo. A cada cinco minutos, ou assim, eu jogo uma pergunta sobre o material que acabámos de falar, e eu posso vê-los a começar a olhar para as suas notas. Mas eu digo: "Parem. Não olhem para as vossas anotações. Basta um minuto para pensarem sobre isso vocês mesmos.” Eu digo-lhes que os nossos cérebros são como uma floresta, e que a memória está lá nalgum lugar. Vocês estão aqui, e a memória está ali. Quanto mais vezes vocês fizerem o caminho até essa memória, mais evidenciado ficará esse caminho, de modo que na próxima vez que vocês precisarem dessa memória, vai ser muito mais fácil encontrá-lo. Mas, assim que vocês olharem para as vossas notas, vocês vão curto-circuitar esse caminho. Vocês deixam de explorar o caminho, porque esse já vos foi dito. " Mary Pat Wenderoth, Professora de Biologia, Universidade de Washington

Criar memórias é criar caminhos e exige esforço, repetição e dedicação. Ler um livro, ver um filme, assistir a uma aula são apenas pontas de icebergues, existe toda uma quantidade de trabalho de construção da memória que cada um precisa de fazer, que mais ninguém pode fazer por nós. E o que estes estudos nos vêm dizer é ainda mais dramático, já que não basta deixarmo-nos expor repetidamente à informação. Ou seja, reler e reler um texto, ou rever e rever um filme, ou assistir a todas as aulas. Se não existir um trabalho de chamar a memória que ilumine o “caminho” até ela, o simples facto da informação nos ser apresentada não ajuda a solidificar a memória em si, ainda que contribua para durar até ao dia seguinte, podendo contribuir para a falsa ideia de que já memorizámos.

Deste modo o que Henry L. Roediger e Mark A McDaniel nos dizem é que as as práticas denominadas de “marranço”, que continuam a ser professadas desde sempre e até aos nossos dias não funcionam. Os vários estudos realizados demonstram que os alunos que realizaram pequenos testes várias vezes depois de uma leitura única, face aos que releram várias vezes o mesmo material, são imensamente mais efetivos a recordar a informação.

Esta abordagem vem assim uma vez mais apoiar as práticas sustentadas em técnicas interativas, ou de jogos, de entre os mais famosos, os conhecidos Quizzes, mas quase todos os outros modelos. Aliás, é exatamente este o modelo proposto pela Escola Virtual em Portugal, que pega nas matérias escolares, e cria cenários hipotéticos que questionam os alunos sobre as matérias. Não querendo fazer aqui defesa promocional da plataforma, tenho de dizer que é excelente, porque um dos maiores problemas que um aluno enfrenta no seu estudo é a falta de uma base de perguntas sobre a matéria. Podendo ter uma plataforma na qual essas perguntas estão disponíveis e com claro feedback, algo essencial a uma efetiva aprendizagem, fica apenas a faltar o investimento do esforço do aluno.

Mas não queria quedar-me pelos testes e quizzes, mais ainda tendo sido eu desde há muitos anos um acérrimo crítico de exames e testes escritos. Aceito que eles servem a comparação, nacional e internacional, necessárias, mas não gosto particularmente do método de avaliar alguém por perguntas escritas, prefiro claramente abordagens projetuais, ou reflexivas e elaborativas como a escrita de ensaios. As razões porque não gosto começam desde logo pela pressão exercida, já que o teste só pode acontecer num momento concreto, e é de possibilidade única, ora o ser humano aprende essencialmente por imitação e tentativa e erro, que são formas de aprender no tempo, iterativas e interativas. Por outro lado, os testes condicionam a aprendizagem para a matéria em modo afunilado. Ou seja, aquilo que os alunos fazem enquanto estudam, releiam ou façam quizzes, é memorizar factos para poder debitar, quando aquilo que nós queremos é que a pessoa memorize esses factos para os articular com outros, para que construa e não apenas recite. Não é por acaso que Henry L. Roediger e Mark A McDaniel começam por enfatizar fortemente os testes, e os elevam a ferramenta de eleição para o estudo e aperfeiçoamento do ato de memorização, mas quando mais na parte final do livro começam a tentar aplicar este modelo à educação, acabam por citar a Taxonomia de Bloom (ver imagem).

Taxonomia de Bloom, revisão de 2001

Contudo, não podemos deixar de reconhecer que o objetivo deste livro, ao contrário do trabalho de Bloom, não são as práticas educativas mas o dar a conhecer de ferramentas e processo que nos permitem memorizar. O que na verdade, e olhando à pirâmide de Bloom, temos de aceitar como vital para tudo o resto. Não é possível criar sem deter conhecimento sobre o que se pretende criar. Assim como todas as restantes categorias que delineiam a nossa inteligência, todas precisam da base, da presença de memórias de factos, que possam ser recordadas no momento certo para agir.

Assim tenho de dizer que o livro vai mais longe do que a simples defesa do quizzing. Os autores apresentam múltiplas técnicas no livro, que se podem encontrar resumidas no último capítulo. Dessas, as três primeiras dirigem-se claramente ao quizzing, mas são passíveis de ser adaptadas a qualquer outro modelo, sendo que são as mais efetivas no processo de memorização: Recuperação, Espaçamento e Intercalação.

1. Recuperação
Práticas de recuperação de informação por meio de testes de perguntas (quizzing). Em vez de reler a informação, ler uma vez, e depois realizar testes sucessivos sobre a matéria. Em vários estudos realizados, os grupos que relerem esqueceram 50% do que aprenderam, enquanto que os que realizaram apenas uma leitura, seguida de testes, investindo o mesmo tempo, esqueceram apenas 13%.

2. Espaçamento
Espaçar as sessões de recuperação, deixando espaço entre estas para esquecer. Os autores não referem, mas isto está baseado nas questões cognitivas da Atenção. O facto de espaçarmos a aprendizagem permite que o foco da atenção sobre a informação se exerça mais vezes, uma vez que o foco da atenção não se sustenta muito tempo sobre o mesmo tipo de estímulos.

3. Intercalação
Alternar os temas em que se está a trabalhar. Contra-intuitivo, porque torna a aprendizagem mais difícil, mas é exatamente por a tornar mais difícil que se torna mais eficaz em termos de memorização. Os autores apresentam vários estudos que demonstram claramente a eficácia da intercalação, que se pode fazer entre disciplinas, ou entre matérias de uma mesma disciplina.

Indo para além dos testes de perguntas, a dupla de psicólogos segue Bloom e apresenta práticas muito menos coladas à voragem métrica dos testes, mais adaptadas aos domínios que falava acima de projeto e ensaio, para o que propõem então outras três técnicas: Elaboração, Geração e Reflexão

4. Elaboração
Tentar encontrar níveis adicionais de significado no material novo. No fundo, estamos a construir novas memórias com base em antigas, o que faz com que os caminhos das antigas ganhem novas ramificações, e se fortaleçam.

5. Geração
Tentar responder a questões ou resolver problemas antes de olhar para as respostas. Aqui fala-se de aprendizagem experimental, em que seguimos o processo de tentativa e erro, procurando o modo correto de ação a partir de outra informação já detida.

6. Reflexão
Uma combinação das práticas de recuperação e de elaboração que adicionem camadas ao material de aprendizagem. Tentar questionar-nos a nós mesmos.

São apresentadas mais duas técnicas, a sétima denominada de "calibração" dos viés cognitivios, mas que talvez os autores, devessem ter chamado de simples Feedback. Não é possível construir aprendizagem sem feedback, sem o efetivo retorno tanto aos quizzes, como a um projeto ou ensaio, o aluno não consegue crescer. Já a última técnica, diz respeito às abordagens mais esotéricas das "mnemónicas", muito interessantes, mas claramente menos relevante, por conduzirem o foco demasiado para a memória como mero fim, em vez de meio para aprendizagem.

Para fechar, aquilo que o livro tem a oferecer pode ser lido num artigo de dez páginas. Aliás, tudo está resumido no último capítulo, ou quase aqui no meu texto. Apesar disso, o livro não é grande e lê-se bem, está bem escrito e permite criar um enquadramento muito interessante para a aprendizagem dos conceitos, sem se tornar fastidioso.

Publicado, com links e imagens no VI (https://virtual-illusion.blogspot.pt/...)
Profile Image for Samantha.
52 reviews
June 3, 2014
A superbly wonderful guide if you want to learn better in a more efficient manner. Mainly, it talks about how you need to slow down and digest the information, think and comprehend the material every so often, but most importantly, you need to quiz yourself in order to better remember the subject matter. Memory retrieval and interleaved learning is what will make you succeed, among other techniques.

For example, a typical student would read the required text and pen highlight the important ideas. Then he/she will go back and reread the text until they have it “memorized” but this leads to a false sense of security that you are “expert in the material”. The material may exist in your short-term memory but it will not stay long-term. Instead what you should do is that as you read/study, you should stop every so often and think about what you read. Summarize it to yourself in your own words or visualize it in a way that will help you remember. An example the book gave is how a particular medical student needed to learn how “dopamine is released from the ventral tegmental area”. This student didn’t just passively read and highlight these words, instead he dug deeper into the material, identified where this was located in the brain, studied images of it and how it worked (thus creating a mental visual aid) and then he later quizzed himself on it. Quizzing yourself is key, not just at that moment, but you need to quiz yourself a day later, then a couple of days later, then perhaps a week later, then maybe a month later, and so on, it’s up to you to find the right memory retrieval spacing that you are comfortable with. Studies in the book have shown that when instructors/professors included weekly comprehensive low-stakes quizzes instead of just the typical midterm and final only, student retention and attendance improved drastically.

Interleaved learning is how you can practice at something, but it must be spaced out, mixed in with other concepts, and varied to produce better mastery over the long-term. However, this method will require more effort and it feels that learning is slower, but you reap the rewards later. An example that the book gave was a study involving a college baseball team over a six-week period. All players were highly-experienced but agreed to take on extra batting practice twice a week. The team was then divided into two batting groups. The first group practiced different kinds of pitches in a linear method – they first mastered hitting fast pitches and when they felt comfortable with that, they moved on to mastering how to hit curve balls, and when they mastered that, they moved on to changeup pitches. The second group, however, learned in a varied manner - the pitcher threw curveballs, fastballs, and changeups in random succession and at first, this frustrated the second group greatly but over time, they learned how to read the pitch and how to respond to it. When the two groups were assessed after the study, it was found that the second group was better at hitting the ball. How this could apply to your learning is that maybe it would be better to vary it – for example, if you’re studying for the GMATs, perhaps you should do sentence correction, math, critical reasoning, data sufficiency, and reading comprehension problems simultaneously instead of doing practice problems in one category at a time.

Reading this book has been immensely helpful and I can’t wait to try out other very important tips that the authors recommended.
Profile Image for Alex Linschoten.
Author 12 books140 followers
August 21, 2015
In 'Make it Stick', the authors explain how to study, how to learn things for long-term retention, and how to tweak the school experience to encourage retention. The authors strive to make examples practical and applicable. Spaced-repetition software is never mentioned in the book -- in fact technology really isn't the focus -- but it's possible to read it as a love letter to Anki. (This would have been five stars but for it being slightly too long.)

Some key things I learnt:

- testing recall helps cement memories
- pure repetition (either rereading something or repeating a concept out loud multiple times) doesn't work, and could even harm you by giving a false sense of confidence/familiarity with the material.
- apparently some of the research also shows that a delay in the feedback (i.e. you don't get to find out how you did on the test at the exact same time as taking the test) is preferable to immediate feedback, even w/r/t types of skills (motor skills e.g.) that you'd think would reward immediate feedback.
- tests don't have to be digitally produced
- production tests (i.e. you have to supply the answer out of thin air) offer greater benefits than multiple-choice tests, but even multiple choice testing offers benefits when compared with no testing.
- the ideal situation is one in which you are 'reaching' in some way -- i.e. the test should be hard. If the test is easy, it's probably not delivering that much benefit.
- difficult tests (where you have to 'reach' further) help cement memories better than easy tests.
- interleaved testing is better than massed testing -- which is to say that instead of siloing all your biology tests together, doing them, then moving on to physics, then moving on to French (for example), you should really mix it all up so that you are switching context. It will be harder and much more frustrating, but the research suggests you'll emerge in the long-term with a much more flexible grasp of the materials.
- building scaffolding and mental maps is important for learning -- without the basic scaffolding of a subject, it's hard to hang new concepts and to expand your knowledge.

Again, not all of this was new to me, and it won't be to many readers, but this was a useful reminder. I shall be tweaking my learning regimen accordingly.
14 reviews32 followers
May 7, 2020
This book was fairly easy to read, and seemed to be organized in a way that followed its teachings (i.e. it would refer back to earlier chapters frequently, mimicking spaced repetition).

It could be that I had too much prior knowledge coming into this book, but I didn't feel like I learned very many new things, and some explanations could have been shortened to make the book more concise.

Overall though, this book has some really useful information and is worth diving into as a general overview of teaching/learning science.
Profile Image for Duy.
57 reviews2 followers
August 24, 2018
Tên sách nghe khá kiêu. Phương pháp cũng lạ. Dại gì không thử. Đúng như lời tác giả nói ngay từ đầu, ý viết lặp đi lặp lại, đưa ra các bằng chứng cho phương pháp. Tốt nhất bạn nên lấy giấy note, mở chương 8 và đọc đến hết là được, mọi ý đều được tổng hợp và đúc kết đầy đủ, tiết kiệm khối thời gian cho bạn làm việc khác nếu bạn không có hứng thú với các ví dụ cho các phương pháp.
Profile Image for Ahmet Alpat.
137 reviews53 followers
December 12, 2019
Öğrenme ve çalışmaya dair bilimsel deneyleri çıkarımlarıyla birlikte ortaya koyan, sade ve temiz bir dille anlatan harika bir kitap. Eğer "Ahmet 2019'da okuduğun iyi bir kitap tavsiye et" deseniz bunu söylerdim sanırım. Temelde öğrenmeyi öğrenmek isteyenler için başucu kitap olabilir.
16 reviews
August 21, 2015
This is an absolutely fantastic and essential book, and I would recommend it to anyone who considers themselves to be a lifelong learner or wants to become one. Like the title indicates, this is a book about the science of how we learn, what are the best strategies to learn effectively and what methods can we use to improve cognition/intelligence. In addition to that, this book provides up-to-date research on similar and related topics in cognitive psychology and neuroscience, specifically, mindset, cognitive biases, intelligence, and neural plasticity. However, I am going to specifically focus on learning strategies and ways to improve cognition/intelligence because I think that is what most people here will find useful. If anyone is interested in one of the topics and you don’t think I covered it in enough detail and are interested in it, I will write about it further.

Common learning and study strategies and why they are ineffective

Most students and learners study by reviewing notes and highlights, re-reading text, and doing this all in one big burst, otherwise known as cramming/massed practice. I know that is what I did in high school and college and, until recently, have just read, highlighted and commented in the margins of the non-fiction books that I have read. Does this sound like you? Well, that sort of learning/study strategy is ineffective.

Why is this ineffective?

Because simply being exposed to the material again does not actually make the material ‘stick’ in your mind. Going over the material in a cram session might allow you to pass the test, but the problem is, is that all of that information will just be stored in your working memory. You are not creating long-term memories because to create a long-term memory, it needs to be deeply encoded by understanding the underlying principle, making connections to prior knowledge, and/or that information be deeply personal. Essentially, performance in the moment is not an indicator of durable learning. Remembering and reciting information weeks after is. Reviewing and cramming can’t help you with that.

The most important component, however, is retrieval. Retrieval strengthens and consolidates this deep-encoding process. You can also identify areas that you struggle with, make adjustments to your learning, and, through repeated testing, make the information ‘stick’.

Why do most of us use such ineffective learning strategies? Shouldn’t we be good judges of our learning? Well, we should, but we arent. We delude ourselves into thinking that we are learning when we are really not (learning meaning it ‘sticking’ in our brains). We are masters of self-deception. The first self-deception when it comes to learning is that we mistake the ease and fluency with which we comprehend a text with learning. So with looking over notes and highlights and re-reading texts, we get more practice reading that material, and thus be able to comprehend it more, but we are not consolidating the information and taking steps to actually recall it when we need it. This was illustrated by a number of studies and experiments, but I will just briefly summarize a few. People actually learned more when the font’s text was slightly blurry. Crazy huh? But it makes sense if you realize that they had to concentrate a lot more reading the text and were less likely to confuse fluency with learning. The other studies have to do with the best learning strategies kicking the common ‘review and cram’ learning strategies butt.

Well, then what are these awesome learning strategies?

The first one is testing. Yes, testing is the best learning strategy, and if you take one thing from this post, then you should understand that testing yourself is vastly superior to cram and review as a learning strategy. In fact, that is precisely why I am writing this post. This is a form of testing, and I definitely want this information to ‘stick’ with me.

Well, then why does it work? You just need to go back a few paragraphs above to realize why it is better. review and cram uses working memory. Working memory, however, is temporary, and we forget about 70% of what we read and hear very quickly, the other 30% we will lose more slowly, but we will still lose it. Therefore, you can think of learning as interrupting the forgetting process. Testing yourself does this because you are not taking that knowledge from your working memory. You are taking it from your long-term memory, and the process retrieving this information from your long-term memory results in that learning being consolidated in that long-term memory and you actually being able to recall and recite that knowledge.

How should I test myself

The most effective way to test yourself is spaced-repetition testing. What is that? Well, it means test yourself before you read or learn something (this has been shown to increase learning in studies), test yourself after your learn something, and then continually test yourself if it is something that you want to ‘stick’ in your brain. That repeated testing after the fact is the most important part. Studies indicate that testing once helped learning, but repeated testing at spaced intervals yielded significant improvements in learning retention. I think this is best illustrated in a study in a middle school where a researcher tested the students in the beginning of class and at the end on some of the material. Come final test time, the students remembered that tested material a lot more than the non-tested material. And this experiment did not even use testing at spaced-intervals, which studies indicate is by far the most effective. Remember, we are masters of self-deception, so do not stop testing something you want to learn because you ‘think’ you ‘learned’ it. You can increase the time you go back and test yourself with that material, but never stop testing yourself.

How should I Test myself

Anything works. Flashcards, multiple choice tests, essays, reflections etc, but the simple rule is that the more cognitive effort you put into the test the better the results, so an essay, teaching, or a discussion will be better than flashcards. Feedback is also essential. You need to know what you are struggling with so that you can change up your learning process.

Test to understand the underlying principle, the rule, the theme, etc of what you are learning. This is essential because this creates a foundation of knowledge that you will be able to add new relevant learning to. Without this foundation, you will not know whether or not any new learning you do is relevant or necessary to that body of knowledge.


What is interleaving? Well, this test has informed me that I need to do a bit more learning on this process. However, my understanding is that your learning will improve if you ‘interleave’ two+ related subjects into your learning. This means that focused repetitive practice is not as effective, that ‘burning’ some knowledge or skill into your brain until you ‘get’ it, is not effective.

Two helpful examples that the book provided is that a company found it more beneficial to train employees in a new procedure by hopping from process 1 to 3 to 5 to 8, etc, rather than making sure the employee really understands 1 before going on to 2. Why? Well, this does not ‘feel’ effective to us, but it helps better understand the underlying principle of things and helps us distinguish and make connections.

A good example is batting practice. The book discusses a study where they had a college baseball team take 2 extra batting sessions a week for like 6 weeks (or something). The control group continued with their normal batting practice of 15 fastballs, 15 curveballs and 15 changeups. While the study group had no idea what pitch was going to be thrown at them. The study group struggled at first, but at the end of the study, they improved their batting average significantly. Why? because they were interleaving the pitches instead of doing a focused mass practice and they were studying how they play. Even though they struggled at first, they were improving their ability to distinguish pitches. This is pretty significant considering that these were already very good hitters.

practice how you play and vary it up

Test in a manner in the way you are going to actually use the knowledge. As for variability, the book gives an example of drill stations on a hockey rink. That is not effective because a hockey player is just learning how to do a touch-pass on that specific area on the rink in that specific context. Vary it up.
how do I improve cognition/intelligence?
First off, what is the difference between learning and cognition/intelligence? Basically, the learning strategies will be tied to the domain of what you are learning. You will learn and remember that domain very well, but it doesnt increase your natural ability to learn other things faster. You will simply know the best ways to learn. Well, what actions do result in a cognition multiplayer? For adults, there are three scientifically supported ones (babies and little kids have a lot more)


This is by far the next most important component of learning. if you don’t want to do every strategy, then you should at least do testing and mindset. Well, what is it? Basically, this revolves around the research of Carol Dweck who wanted to find out why some people give up when they are confronted with failure while others persevere and overcome that failure. Her findings (extensively studied) is that it all comes down to mindset.

Well, what characterizes the people who take failure badly? They see failure as an indication of their innate ability. They think failure means that they are stupid, not intelligent and do not have any hope of overcoming that failure. Their mindset is ‘fixed’. They also see the purpose of learning to be achievement, not actual learning. Why? Well, since they see success and failure as an indication of their fixed ability and intelligence, then learning is simply a way to show the world how smart they are.

What does this result in? A fear of failure. Students who are successful with this mindset do not take risks. And if they are confronted with a hard problem that they do not know how to do, they give up and provide some sort of excuse. They are trying to protect their identity as intelligent. Their main priority isnt to learn, because taking risks and putting forth effort is essential to learning. It is even worse for students who have experienced repeated failure. They internalize a feeling of learned helplessness and simply give up. They think they are stupid and so what is the point? They don’t even try. I will admit that I had a fixed mindset for quite a while. ‘Luckily’, I was ‘successful’ one, but the negative impacts of this mindset definitely impacted my life in a negative way.

How about people who handle failure well? They see learning determined by effort, not by intelligence. Therefore, when they experience difficulty or failure, they view it as an opportunity to learn. This is the proper way to view failure because failure provides you with valuable information. It is one of the main reasons why testing is so effective as a learning strategy. Moreover, because they see learning as determined by effort, they are also willing to take a lot more risks in their learning and persevere through failure.

I am sure a few of you are thinking, is mindset actually backed up by ‘hard’ science or is it just a way to trick the mind. In fact, it is! Besides the loads and loads of studies that Dweck has done, neuroscience also backs it up thanks to neuroplasticity. Our brain changes based on our actions, which means that the power to increase our ability is largely within our own control. Intelligence isnt fixed, but does increase when you put forth cognitive effort.

Deliberate Practice

Increasing our ability being largely in our own hands is also born out by this. Deliberate practice is how you gain mastery in a certain domain. It is goal oriented, mostly solitary, and its purpose is to constantly exceed your past performance. To obtain mastery takes an incredible amount of time and really disproves the notion of ‘they are simply a natural’. No, they achieved mastery through long hours of deliberate practice.

The takeaway is that anyone can achieve mastery in a specific domain if they have the time and focus because what determines mastery is not innate ability, but the quantity and quality of practice. I am sure innate ability helps some, but the point is you can master a domain with just average abilities and deliberate practice, but you certainly can’t master it with natural abilities but no deliberate practice.

Memory Cues
I first should point out that memory cues are a method to organize knowledge that is already learned. You won’t learn anything from using these cues, and you won’t understand the underlying principle or theme of a topic without learning and mastering that first. So remembering a bunch of names and dates and thinking you know history is just stupid, because you dont.

So what is the point of memory cues? Well, it is to organize everything that you have learned and attached cues to what you have learned so you can immediately recall it. The most famous and extensive memory cue system would probably be the memory palace. Basically, it ties what you want to remember to mental images (the more shocking and out there the better) and ‘hangs’ them in an imagined physical location. When you want to recall something, you just mentally walk through that location and the images you placed in that location will trigger what you were trying to remember. Why does it work? Well, we are far better at remembering images than basically anything else. This takes advantage of that fact.
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