Whether you are a student in school or college or you just want to learn a new skill, learning something new is always exciting. But did you know that there is a way to learn things quickly and retain them for a longer time?
Skip the laptop, use pen and paper
First step is, skip the laptop. You might be a fast typist at your laptop or computer but while learning writing down notes with pen and paper is the best method to follow because there are so many distractions online like pop-up ads for example. To retain those notes, study-sleep-study. In a French experiment, two groups were taught the Swahili translation for 16 French words over two sessions. Group 1 studied in the morning then took a break and studied again in the evening but Group 2 studied in the evening, slept for the night and then resumed studying in the morning. Though there was the same amount of time between the two study sessions, the sleep group could recall 10 out of 16 words while the no sleep group could only get 7 and a half.
Modify your practice
Try modifying your practice slightly. A study of 86 healthy volunteers who were asked to learn a computer-based motor skill over two training sessions. One group’s second training session had them learn the task in a slightly altered way while the other repeated the task with the exact same practice. Those who used two different strategies performed better than the group that did the task in the same way.
A study found that those who worked out for about 15 minutes on a treadmill and then completed a memory task performed the task quicker than the people who didn’t exercise. It doesn’t have to be a heavy exercise, a walk in the park is fine too.
Use Mnemonic device method
This means that whatever series or long sequence you’re trying to memorize, convert it into abbreviations. For example if there are 5 items in a series, create an abbreviation with the first alphabet of each item. This method has proven to help you memorize quicker and retain it as well because theories suggest that adults can store only a limited number of items in our memory. When you hold information in abbreviations, you can store larger amount of items in your brain.
Water helps improve overall mental processing and learning. So make sure when you’re going to give an exam, drink plenty of water before. If you’re thirsty while giving the test, you’re likely to perform lesser.
Why wait for someone else to reward you? You should reward yourself when you accomplish a set goal. Experiments have proven that rewards help to memorize better. Higher the reward, higher is the memory function due to the release of feel-good neurotransmitter dopamine in the hippocampus prior to learning.