Improving Your Memory

Improving Your Memory

Anyone can improve their memory by following a 3 step process:
Paying attention
Applying constructivist methods 
Making information easy to remember



Paying attention
Take an active role in learning.
Memorization is sometimes needed but is not enough.
Review information and quiz yourself for true understanding.
Stop being passive in class and when studying. 
Many students equate going to class and hearing the prof. with real learning.
LWI can be dangerous. (Listening While Ignoring)
It gives the impression that are trying but you can't remember anything later.
Thus you feel you did your job but couldn't explain anything when asked.



Constructivism
Constructivism deals with correlating new information with old information.
Thus, one constructs new understanding by fitting new information with prior understanding or experiences.
Rather than memorizing random facts, try to relate them to prior knowledge.
Think about new information and draw comparisons to other things you know.
Think about similar information learned earlier.
Draw analogies between old information and new information.
This allows you to see the big picture and not get swamped with new information.
Identify main points.
Think about how these fit in with what you know from other experiences or classes.



Make information memorable
Repetition, Repetition, Repetition, Repetition, Repetition, Repetition, Repetition
Read it, Write it, Say it, Explain it, Draw it, Ask questions about it.....
Break down words by prefix or suffix. (Hydro relates to water)
Use memory tricks:
Mnemonics for lists: 

ex. taxonomy of living things

King Philip Chops Onions From Grandpa's Supply

Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species
Make silly rhymes or sayings to remember lists.
Use silly analogies to remember examples.
Humor is a powerful memory trigger; the dumber the better.

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