- “a person’s predisposition to solve a given problem in a specific manner even though “better” or more appropriate methods of solving the problem exist.”
- Best to work in small doses
- Work in 25-miniute blocks
- If someone interrupts you, say I am on the clock, can’t be interrupted.
- During a Pomodoro, don’t work to finish, just work to get to 25 minutes
- Working under time-pressure can mimic and prepare for a test.
- Step 1:Write the name of the concept at the top of a blank piece of paper.
- Step 2:Write down an explanation of the concept on the page. Use plain English. Pretend you are teaching it to someone else (e.g a new student, a parent, a child). This should highlight what you understand, but more importantly pinpoint what you don’t quite know.
- Step 3:Review what you have pinpointed you don’t know. Go back to the source material, re-read, and re-learn it. Repeat Step 2.
- Step 4:If you are using overly wordy or confusing language (or simply paraphrasing the source material) try again so you filter the content. Simplify your language, and where possible use simple analogy.
- Cornell Notes are a proven focused note-taking method. When used appropriately, students are guaranteed to increase their knowledge and raise their grades in any given class! Cornell Notes are taken during class lectures, class power points, class readings, or movies in which students are responsible for the information
- “SQ3R” is a reading comprehension method named for its five steps: survey, question, record, read, recite, reflect, and review.
- Studying one hour while well rested is worth three hours studying tired
- Designed to tackle tough problems head on using the pre-frontal cortex
- Allows you to think outside of the box, finding new alternatives to new and old problems
- Focused and Diffused Mode Learning work in tandem
- Spaced repetitionis a learning technique that incorporates increasing intervals of time between subsequent review of previously learned material
- You must have information persisting in your long-term memory if you are to master the material well enough to do well on tests and us it creatively.
- Once you build chunks, subsequent related chunks are easier to develop
Memorizing Facts vs Learning Concepts
- While learning facts is important, learning concepts is more important
Studying Alone vs Studying in Small Groups
- Optimized learning requires independent as well as small group learning
- However, be sure to study the material or do the problems before studying in groups
- Study the foundation for of a complex subject before trying to learn concepts
- Learn the concepts before focusing on the details
- The process of binding pieces of individual bits of information into a meaningful whole
- It is important to:
- Know what you are chunking
- Understand what you are chunking
- Understand when to chunk
- When you first learn how to solve a problem, your entire working memory is involved, all four slots. However, as you become familiar with the concept, you develop a single chunk. This frees the working memory to process other information, and solidifies your long-term memory.
Illusions of Competence
- Recalling material (details and concepts) and practicing is more effective than re-reading
- Highlighting and Underlining are over-rated
- Read the next day’s material the night before
- Go to class & take detailed notes
- Review the notes ASAP after class
- Only after reviewing the notes & doing the homework do you study with friends
- You can’t learn anything well without practice and repetition
- Asking the teacher questions is more efficient than reading the book for answer
- Avoiding something is more painful than actually doing the item we were procrastinating from
- Procrastination is the monumental keystone problem in our lives
- Setting priorities and execution is key Procrastination is like an addiction, it causes temporary satisfaction
while outside your usual place of study
- Studying in a place different than usual helps strengthen your grasp of the material
- Practice or study a concept by approaching if from different angles (strategies) i.e. lecture notes, text book, YouTube videos, flash cards
- This is supremely better than studying one way something that you already know.
- The yield of overlearning has a diminishing return
- Never study 10 identical problems in a row. At some point after the third try, you are not thinking, but mimicking.
- Study the way the test is, mixed up.
- Start in one section, go to another, then another, then go back.
- Pete Carroll made practice as competitive as the real game
Science Problems: Study Technique #1
- Skim the assigned homework and practice exam/quizzes
- Review the lecture notes
- Rework example problems presented in lecture
- Work the assigned homework and practice exams and quizzes.
Study Technique #2
- Do a problem
- Take a break
- Do the problem again before bed
- Do the problem as early as possible the next day
Study Technique #3
- Do the odd problems in a section or enough of each type to get an understanding
- Let the problems marinate
- Write flash cards of the main concepts, and one example of each kind of problem
- Before the exam, be able to list everything on the sheet, concepts, types of problems, and techniques.
- We procrastinate on things that make us feel uncomfortable.
- The most important thing is to get started and to ignore distractions.
- Find a quiet study space
- Turn off phone
- Noise-cancelling headphones
- Practice ignoring distractions
- Commit yourself to certain routines each day
- Delay rewards until you finish the task
- It you always blame someone else for your failures, it is time to look in the mirror.
- Eat the ugliest from first.
- Studying only alone is a definitely a disadvantage
- Be sure to have the foundation for a class before taking it.
- Check out the competition
- Multi-tasking uses up your working memory, so new ideas can’t take root.
- If you are taking AP Calculus AB and everyone in the class took Calculus over the summer and you went to camp, you’ll be at a competitive disadvantage
- Be sure to get good advice when selecting classes.
- Challenge yourself. But don’t get overwhelmed
- Think critically, always compare and contrast.
- Focus on more on the process, less on the outcome
- Building Powerful Chunks/Building a Chunked Library
- Work a key problem all the way through on paper
- Do another repetition, paying attention to the process
- Take a break/study something different
- Do another repetition
- Work another key problem all the way through on paper
- Active work the key steps (in your head) while doing something active, such as walking, taking a shower
- Recalling is much more effective than re-reading!!!
Hitting the Wall (the Dip)
- Sometimes we feel as though we just can’t push through and solve a problem, or master a concept. Just means that the mind is wrestling with the problem. This is a natural phenomenon.
- Keep problems and solutions neatly organized
- Chunking compresses the brain, gets information to the long-term memory storage areas, so that working memory has room, lessening the chance of choking on a test
- Pre-testing is a valuable learning tool
- Building chunks improves intuition and better luck
- Transform Distant Deadlines into Daily Ones
- Set tomorrows priorities tonight
- Finish homework early – 24 hours before the typical night before usual deadline.
Limit Time wasting Apps
Enhancing Your Memory
- Memory Palace (95% recall)
The Value of Great Teachers
- Ask questions
- Write down your feelings and thoughts about the test before the test will lessen the negative impact of pressure on performance
- Negative self-talk can significantly hinder performance
- Occurs under duress when the working memory is full
10 Rules of Good Studying
- Use Recall
- Test Yourself
- Chunk your problems
- Take the show on the Road
- Spaced Repetition
- Take Breaks
- Think, write and tell the Solution (easy enough for a 10-year old to understand)
- Eliminate and say no to Distractions
- Eat your ugliest frog first
- Focus on the Positive
- Meditation improves the ability to concentrate
- Exercise improves the ability to concentrate
10 Rules of Bad Studying
- Passive Reading, No Bueno
- Highlighting words gives a false sense of security
- Merely glancing at the solution and assuming that you know it
- Waiting until the last minute to study (no time to consolidate neural pathing (chunking)_
- Repeatedly solving the same type of problem that you already know
- Turning study sessions into chat sessions
- Studying with friends before working out the problems beforehand
- Neglecting to read the material before starting to solve the problems
- Thinking you can learn at your best when you are constantly distracted.
- Thinking you can learn on insufficient sleep
Barbara Oakley: A mind for Numbers