LivingBy examining yourself you also learn

By examining yourself you also learn

examen-memoriaSolve the questions of aexamnot only allows us to check our knowledge. What’s more,reinforces memory and helps to recall information later. The key is that we create more effective mental clues when we examine ourselves than when we are just studying, according to a study published in the journalScience.

“Imagine you are tryinglearn a word in another language“explains Katherine Rawson, professor in the Department of Psychology at Kent State University (Ohio, USA) and co-author of the work.” In our research, we used pairs of terms in English and Swahili, such ascloudcloud (cloud). To learn this term, you would simply repeat it over and over each time you study it, but this is not an especially effective strategy to record something in memory. “According to Rawson, it is more effective to use the so-calledmediators, that is, words that connect both words. “For examplecloudsounds likewing (wings), and birds have wings and they fly through the clouds, “Rawson suggests. Interestingly, these mediators are more effective when created during an exam than while studying.

In their experiments, Rawson and his colleague Mary Pyc showed that individuals who studied took a test and then went back to studying words couldremember up to 3 times more terms than peers who only studied. One of the possible explanations is that the failures during the recovery process (rememberwing -ala- al leercloud-cloud-) lead to the choice of better mediators and these failures only appear when knowledge is put to the test and not when it is studied.

? Considering that hundreds of experiments have been conducted to establish the effects of tests on learning, it is surprising that we know so little about why tests improve memory ,? argues Pyc.

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