It’s Science

Our program is based on scientific research to maximize learning and retention.
These are Smart Study Techniques that support learning based on the way that the brain actually learns,

If students closely follow our program, they will find that they will learn and retain far more information than ever before.


The Research Shows

People learn better when using multiple, short training episodes rather than one extended session.
UC Irvine neurobiologists Christine Gall and Gary Lynch found that study sessions in three short, repetitious episodes spaced one hour apart performed best on memory tests.

Brain synapses encode memories in the hippocampus much better when activated briefly at one-hour intervals. “This explains why prolonged ‘cramming’ is inefficient , only one set of synapses is being engaged,” said Lynch, professor of psychiatry, human behavior and anatomy, and neurobiology. “Repeated short training sessions, spaced in time, engage multiple sets of synapses”.


Quiz yourself instead of re-reading.

“Repeated studying after learning had no effect on delayed recall, but repeated testing produced a
large positive effect,” 


Metacognition

You may think you have a good idea of what you have learned and what you have left to learn in a course or during a test prep session, but the more explicit about it you are, the better. Rather than assuming you have been absorbing everything you read, make a list of everything you actually remember. Then go back and see what concepts you have missed.

Look forward to forgetting.

Making mistakes while learning can benefit memory and lead to the correct answer, but only if the guesses are close-but-no-cigar. “Making random guesses does not appear to benefit later memory for the right answer, but near-miss guesses act as steppingstones for retrieval of the correct information.  Forgetting can actually be good for the brain. When the brain has to work hard to retrieve a half-forgotten memory, it re-doubles the strength of that memory.

Imagine you’ll be teaching someone else.

When students expect to teach new material to others, they remember more of that material correctly and organize their recall more effectively.

Distributive Practice

There are several ways of generating long-term retention. Distributed practice is the most natural way to achieve this. We do not need any additional mnemonic devices: we just need to space our learning sessions intelligently and quiz ourselves.

When we want to learn something well, studying the information or practicing the task just once is almost always inadequate. Reviewing the information or practicing at the right time is critical for durable learning.

Distributed practice refers to reviews that take place where some time elapsed after the original learning event, as opposed to reviews that occur immediately following the original learning event (termed massed practice).

In the research literature, the learning advantage of distributed over massed practice is known as the spacing effect. In general, the research evidence is clear that spaced or distributed practice is superior to massed practice for long-term learning and retention. Even when the total time spent on studying or practice is equated, if the review(s) is/are spaced apart rather than massed, long-term learning is enhanced.

It should, however, be noted that the spacing effect, to be precise, refers to the benefit of spaced or distributed reviews of the same information.

According to the study-phase retrieval theory, each time you encounter an item during review, there is an attempted retrieval from memory. If that retrieval is successful (i.e., you are reminded of the earlier occurrence), the memory becomes more resistant to forgetting. In distributed practice, gaps between occurrences of an item make retrieval effortful, which benefits memory. In massed practice, you just saw the item and it is still on your mind, so there is no need to retrieve it from memory.

Researchers compared the effects of different spacing lags on different retention intervals (the time between the last review and the final test). The findings suggest that after initially learning facts, the optimal gap before having a review session is about 10 to 30 percent of the retention interval. So, if you have to remember something for a seven-day period, there should be a review of the learned data one day after the initial learning session.