Critical Thinking 4


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How learning works and how you can become a better learner.

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Critical Thinking 4

  1. 1. Learning and Memory in Everyday Life How Does Learning Work, and What Can You Do To Become a Better Learner?
  2. 2. What is Learning? <ul><li>A relatively permanent change in your skills and knowledge as a function of your experiences </li></ul><ul><li>Being relatively permanent implies that it can change and that as long as you use the learning it will be available </li></ul><ul><li>Psychologists know that learning has occurred because of a change in behavior </li></ul><ul><li>Change means that something new has been added to your repertoire of thoughts and actions </li></ul><ul><li>Being a function of experiences means that whatever you learn is based on events you encounter daily </li></ul>
  3. 3. Factors Affecting the Acquisition of Information <ul><li>The First Factor: Time on Task </li></ul><ul><li>Whenever you want to learn something, the more time you spend at it the more effective will be the learning </li></ul><ul><li>The quality of the time is more important than the actual time spent </li></ul><ul><li>Concentrate on what’s going on, participate in discussions, summarize and paraphrase ideas for yourself, and ask questions </li></ul><ul><li>Asking questions is important </li></ul><ul><li>Overcome the belief that your questions are silly or dumb or that by asking a question you’re stupid </li></ul><ul><li>Time on task is important for learning skills that are needed to do a job well </li></ul>
  4. 4. The Second Factor: The Role of Practice <ul><li>Active Practice Enhances Learning </li></ul><ul><li>Learning is an active process </li></ul><ul><li>Being actively involved in your learning experience enhances learning and retention </li></ul><ul><li>Time on task needs the following characteristics: </li></ul><ul><li>Appropriate levels of interest and motivation to learn </li></ul><ul><li>Attention is focused on the task </li></ul><ul><li>A goal for what must be learned is established and pursued </li></ul><ul><li>Questions are asked when something isn’t understood </li></ul><ul><li>Feedback is sought in order to learn from mistakes </li></ul><ul><li>Attempts are made to integrate and establish connections among various ideas or components of the skill </li></ul><ul><li>Rote repetition is discouraged </li></ul><ul><li>Critical thinking processes such as analysis, synthesizing, and evaluating information are emphasized </li></ul><ul><li>Whenever appropriate, ideas about and experiences with the information are written down and/or discussed with others </li></ul>
  5. 5. More on Practice <ul><li>Distribute Your Practice over Time </li></ul><ul><li>Massed Practice ( cramming ) doesn’t produce retention </li></ul><ul><li>Consequently, learning doesn’t occur </li></ul><ul><li>Inefficient and ineffective way to learn </li></ul><ul><li>Massed Practice taxes your ability to remember information, lowers your energy levels, produces fatigue, and enhances test anxiety </li></ul><ul><li>Distributed Practice, taking small chunks over time produces greater retention </li></ul><ul><li>Twice the information is recalled through Distributed Practice </li></ul><ul><li>On difficult and verbal learning, Distributed Practice enhances learning </li></ul><ul><li>Distributed Practice is most noticeable when information must be recalled rather than recognized </li></ul>
  6. 6. The Third Factor: The Role of Feedback <ul><li>The Purpose of Feedback is to Reduce the Number of Errors that can be Produced </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge of Results enhances what is to be learned </li></ul><ul><li>External Sources: Feedback from teachers, super- visors, tests </li></ul><ul><li>Internal Sources: Perceptions of progress on task, cues from body movements and thinking processes </li></ul><ul><li>Feedback is most effective when it is immediate </li></ul><ul><li>Feedback must be detailed, specific, and constructive </li></ul><ul><li>It is important that detailed information be given about what was wrong as well as specific suggestions for how to improve: Constructive Feedback </li></ul>
  7. 7. The Fourth Factor: The Role of Positive Reinforcement <ul><li>Positive Reinforcers are Pleasant Stimuli that Occur after a Response and Increase the Likelihood of that Response Recurring </li></ul><ul><li>Rewards Increase the Frequency of Desirable Behaviors </li></ul><ul><li>They improve performance in sports, on the job, and in school; lead to better health habits, communications in relationships, and in communications skills themselves </li></ul><ul><li>Positive Reinforcers Can Help Reduce the Frequency of Bad Habits </li></ul><ul><li>Rewarding the behaviors that you do want will increase those behaviors </li></ul><ul><li>Positive Reinforcers Work Best When Given Immediately After a Response </li></ul><ul><li>An association is made between the behavior and the reward </li></ul><ul><li>Delay in reward may reinforce the wrong behavior </li></ul><ul><li>Some of the Most Powerful Reinforces are Secondary Reinforcers </li></ul>
  8. 8. The Fifth Factor: Reinforcement Schedules <ul><li>Two Basic Reinforcement Schedules </li></ul><ul><li>Continuous Reinforcement </li></ul><ul><li>Reinforcing every correct response </li></ul><ul><li>Partial Reinforcement </li></ul><ul><li>Reinforcing only a certain number of correct responses or after a given time schedule </li></ul><ul><li>Partial Reinforcement Schedules Help Maintain Behaviors Over Time </li></ul><ul><li>All reinforcement schedules have “gaps” produced by time or by the number of responses that were not reinforced </li></ul><ul><li>These “gaps” provide opportunities for other internal or external rewards to become associated with the actions and can gain control over them </li></ul><ul><li>Partial Reinforcement Schedules Allow Behaviors Leading to Distant Rewards to be Maintained </li></ul><ul><li>Long-term pay-offs after short-term losses </li></ul>
  9. 9. The Partial Reinforcement Schedules <ul><li>Fixed Ratio </li></ul><ul><li>The reinforcer is given after a certain number of correct responses has occurred </li></ul><ul><li>Variable Ratio </li></ul><ul><li>A reinforcer is given after a varied number of correct responses has occurred </li></ul><ul><li>Fixed Interval </li></ul><ul><li>A reinforcer is given after a fixed time period has passed after the correct response </li></ul><ul><li>Variable Ratio </li></ul><ul><li>A reinforcer is given after a varied time period has passed after the correct response </li></ul>
  10. 10. The Sixth Factor: Extinction <ul><li>When Responses Are No Longer Followed by the Rewards That Control Them, Extinction Occurs </li></ul><ul><li>The behaviors weaken and cease to occur </li></ul><ul><li>It is not the same as forgetting; the incentive to perform is gone </li></ul><ul><li>The reappearance of an extincted response is spontaneous recovery </li></ul><ul><li>Resistance to Extinction occurs due to: </li></ul><ul><li>They were initially learned or maintained under partial reinforcement </li></ul><ul><li>Your actions also come under the control of internal rewards (e.g., self-praise) or other external reinforcers in the environment </li></ul><ul><li>When you give yourself praise for a job well-done, you tend to be more comfortable about doing a good job the next time </li></ul>
  11. 11. The Seventh Factor: Negative Side Effects of Rewards <ul><li>Positive Reinforcers May Affect People and Events Beyond the Initial Target Behavior </li></ul><ul><li>Reinforcing certain actions may produce unintended reprocussions </li></ul><ul><li>People May Concentrate on Earning a Reward and Make Performing Desirable Behaviors Secondary </li></ul><ul><li>Looking for “loopholes” becomes more important than learning </li></ul><ul><li>The Effects of Positive Reinforcers May Not Generalize to Other Situations </li></ul><ul><li>What is learned in one situation may not provide the motivation to continue the previously learned behavior </li></ul><ul><li>External Reinforcers May Undermine Intrinsic Rewards </li></ul><ul><li>Rewards given for something that is already enjoyable causes a loss of interest </li></ul><ul><li>The Wrong Behaviors Can Be Inadvertently Reinforced </li></ul><ul><li>Attention is a powerful secondary reinforcer, and it may come in many forms </li></ul><ul><li>Rewards May Lose Their Attractiveness in the Long Run </li></ul><ul><li>Too much of a good thing can cause a loss of motivation and interest . </li></ul>
  12. 12. The Eighth Factor: The Role of Negative Reinforcement <ul><li>Aversive Stimuli Whose Reduction or Termination Increases the Likelihood that an Ongoing Behavior Will Occur </li></ul><ul><li>A Positive Reinforcer increases a response through the administration of something desirable; Negative Reinforcers remove something undesirable in order to get or keep a response going </li></ul><ul><li>When unpleasant stimuli occur people try to remove them by escaping or avoiding them </li></ul><ul><li>Escaping or avoiding the situation can bring about drug abuse, excessive daydreaming or fantasizing, or anxieties </li></ul><ul><li>Many fears and phobias are avoidance responses </li></ul>
  13. 13. The Ninth Factor: The Role of Punishment <ul><li>The Use of an Aversive Stimulus to Eliminate or Decrease the Strength of a Response </li></ul><ul><li>Punishment vs. Abuse vs. Discipline </li></ul><ul><li>Punished behavior tends to occur less frequently, and this can be produced through: </li></ul><ul><li>The inappropriate behavior leads to a natural and logical unpleasant consequence </li></ul><ul><li>There is an unpleasant stimulus given deliberately after a response </li></ul><ul><li>Something pleasant is taken away after an inappropriate behavior </li></ul><ul><li>Problems can occur through the use of punishment </li></ul><ul><li>Frustration and anger can develop and a focus can be more on “getting even” than learning anything new </li></ul><ul><li>A fear response develops producing an avoidance response </li></ul><ul><li>Many people can’t distinguish between punishment and abuse </li></ul>
  14. 14. More on Punishment <ul><li>Principles for Administering Punishment </li></ul><ul><li>It must be applied immediately </li></ul><ul><li>A connection needs to be made between the behavior and the punishment </li></ul><ul><li>The punishment should “fit” the infraction </li></ul><ul><li>For something minor, the punishment must be minor </li></ul><ul><li>It must be consistently applied </li></ul><ul><li>Punishment must occur every time a problem behavior occurs as well as an explanation for the punishment </li></ul><ul><li>It should be limited to specific responses </li></ul><ul><li>Never use punishment indiscriminately or for anything general such as making someone a “better person” </li></ul><ul><li>It should be humanely and sensitively applied </li></ul><ul><li>The physical and psychological well-being of the person needs to be preserved </li></ul>
  15. 15. The Tenth Factor: The Role of Organization & Planning <ul><li>Without Organization and Planning, Practice, Feedback, and Reinforcement will do Little Good </li></ul><ul><li>Effective time management aids learning </li></ul><ul><li>Short-term planning and attitudes toward the use of time are the best predictors of college grades, not academic ability </li></ul><ul><li>Flexible monthly planning along with weekly and monthly rewards leads to better performance in school </li></ul><ul><li>Time Management Practices for Success in School: </li></ul><ul><li>Short-Range Planning Attitudes Toward Time </li></ul><ul><li> Make a daily list Don’t let others infringe on your time </li></ul><ul><li>Plan each day Work on school work on school days </li></ul><ul><li>Schedule things to do Always work on improving yourself </li></ul><ul><li>Be clear on next week Use your time constructively </li></ul><ul><li>Set and keep priorities Do assignments long before they’re due </li></ul><ul><li> Quit doing activities that are unconstructive </li></ul>
  16. 16. Remembering What You Learned <ul><li>Memory is the ability to bring to conscious awareness the things you’ve experienced, imagined, and learned </li></ul><ul><li>Memory is the result of learning </li></ul><ul><li>Your ability to learn depends on your ability to remember previous ideas </li></ul><ul><li>Humanity’s unique ability to survive has depended on memory </li></ul><ul><li>memory involves acquiring, encoding, storing, and retrieving information </li></ul><ul><li>Two major theories of learning are the memory system approach and the levels-of-processing approach </li></ul>
  17. 17. The Memory System <ul><li>The Three Stages of Memory </li></ul><ul><li>The Memory System or Information Processing Approach </li></ul><ul><li>Sensory Registry (Sensory Information Storage) </li></ul><ul><li>Data is stored in full detail in the sense organ </li></ul><ul><li>Almost unlimited capacity with very rapid decay </li></ul><ul><li>Visual registry ( iconic and eidetic imagery ), Auditory registry ( echoic storage ) </li></ul><ul><li>The “cocktail party phenomenon” </li></ul><ul><li>Short-Term Memory (Working Memory, Present Conscious Memory) </li></ul><ul><li>Limited to 7 +/- 2 chunks of information at a time </li></ul><ul><li>Limited to 1.5 to 2 seconds </li></ul><ul><li>The serial position effect: the recall of items depends on the position in a list </li></ul><ul><li>Primacy and Recency Effects </li></ul><ul><li>Encoding in STM is by sounds or images </li></ul><ul><li>Information is maintained in STM through Maintenance rehearsal ( Rote ) </li></ul>
  18. 18. More on the Stages of Memory <ul><li>Long-Term Memory </li></ul><ul><li>Almost unlimited in capacity </li></ul><ul><li>Encoding is by imagery and meaning </li></ul><ul><li>Storage is through a Semantic Network or Semantic Tree </li></ul><ul><li>Transfer of information from STM to LTM: </li></ul><ul><li>Elaborative Rehearsal: an associative organization </li></ul><ul><li>Organizes the new material with what is already learned </li></ul><ul><li>Information is maintained in LTM through Elaborative Rehearsal and Rote </li></ul><ul><li>Types of LTM: </li></ul><ul><li>Episodic Memory: events or life experiences </li></ul><ul><li>Semantic Memory: facts, rules, and concepts </li></ul><ul><li>Procedural Memory: strategies for performing actions </li></ul>
  19. 19. The Levels-of-Processing Approach to Understanding Memory <ul><li>Memory is an active process where information is analyzed at different levels and later reconstructed </li></ul><ul><li>When given something to learn, you begin by analyzing it at a rather shallow level such as deciding if you need to go on to a deeper analysis of the word or object </li></ul><ul><li>The rapid forgetting of material is due to the shallow analysis of it. </li></ul><ul><li>The persistence of information in LTM is related to the deeper processing it receives </li></ul><ul><li>Information is transformed into a memory code based on meaning </li></ul><ul><li>Processing information to a deeper level implies spending time to attach relevant semantic and imagery codes </li></ul><ul><li>It can be an automatic or self-initiated process </li></ul>
  20. 20. Explanations for Forgetting <ul><li>Three Theories of Forgetting </li></ul><ul><li>The decay of the memory trace is a factor in the loss of information in sensory memory </li></ul><ul><li>When rehearsal of information is prevented, decay of the memory trace may account for forgetting in STM </li></ul><ul><li>Rehearsing in STM, or transfer to LTM, and other factors are responsible for forgetting </li></ul><ul><li>Failure to retrieve information </li></ul><ul><li>LTM has an unlimited capacity. Forgetting is due to problems with people’s ability to retrieve some of the knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Your emotional state at the time of learning and the time of recall affect retention </li></ul><ul><li>Emotional cues can help retrieve information up to a point </li></ul><ul><li>Recall forces you to reconstruct, reproduce, or recreate the original information from memory codes </li></ul><ul><li>Interference among memory traces </li></ul><ul><li>Proactive Interference: Old memories interfere with new learning </li></ul><ul><li>Retroactive Interference: New memories interfere with old learning </li></ul>
  21. 21. Memory’s seven fallacies <ul><li>Transience </li></ul><ul><li>Forgetting that occurs with the passage of time </li></ul><ul><li>Absent-Mindedness </li></ul><ul><li>Often attributed to four things: 1) divided attention; 2) insufficient attention when encoding; 3) operating on “automatic” and 4) change blindness (encoding at an extremely shallow level) </li></ul><ul><li>Blocking </li></ul><ul><li>Retrieval cues are unavailable even though a word or name has been encoded or stored </li></ul><ul><li>Misattribution </li></ul><ul><li>Recalling events that never happened or recalling them incorrectly or at the wrong time or place </li></ul><ul><li>Suggestability </li></ul><ul><li>The tendency to incorporate misleading information from external cues into recollections </li></ul><ul><li>Bias </li></ul><ul><li>Memories are rescripted to fit present views </li></ul><ul><li>Persistence </li></ul><ul><li>Remembering things you wish to forget </li></ul>
  22. 22. Improving Your Memory <ul><li>Overlearning </li></ul><ul><li>Practice beyond the point of learning or mastery </li></ul><ul><li>Categorize Information </li></ul><ul><li>Grouping or chunking information into groups or assigning information into categories </li></ul><ul><li>Creating a cognitive map using pictures, drawings, designs to represent ideas </li></ul><ul><li>Elaborate on the Information </li></ul><ul><li>Embellish the information you’re learning by analyzing it in greater detail </li></ul><ul><li>Get beyond the facts, and integrate information </li></ul><ul><li>Reflect any ideas in writing such as in a journal relating past and present experiences </li></ul><ul><li>Ask yourself questions about the material </li></ul><ul><li>Use Mental Imagery </li></ul><ul><li>Assigning an imagery code helps you to learn faster and remember longer </li></ul><ul><li>Look for something interesting, and humorous about it </li></ul>
  23. 23. Improving Your Memory <ul><li>Use Mnemonic Devices </li></ul><ul><li>Use short phrases where the first letter of each word creates a recall item </li></ul><ul><li>Connect items in a short rhyming phrase or poem </li></ul><ul><li>Repeating the information with a cadence and beat with music makes it easier to remember </li></ul><ul><li>Use acronyms where words are formed out of the first letter of each item that needs to be remembered </li></ul><ul><li>Narratives are short stories containing all the items to be remembered; the sillier the narrative, the easier it is to remember </li></ul><ul><li>Substitutions convert relatively abstract materials into something more concrete and easier to remember: substitute a picture formed from the sounds in a name; substitute consonants in the alphabet, and vowels are used to fill in the gaps </li></ul><ul><li>Keywords are used to form an image of the sound and a word </li></ul><ul><li>Method of Loci is placing everything to be remembered in specific and recognizable places </li></ul><ul><li>Peg systems or peg words are hooks to attach things you want to learn </li></ul>