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Learning how to learn

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Hints for learning better

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Learning how to learn

  1. 1. Learning to learn How your life in college can be easier
  2. 2. Read, underline, make summaries, prepare mind maps If you read your textbook at least 7 times, you’ll be fine. Read again and again Is it the answer? .
  3. 3. Read, underline, make summaries prepare mind maps I you read your textbook at least 7 times, you’ll be fine. Read again and again Is it the answer? NO!
  4. 4. Overlearning • When we read the same notes again and again, they become familiar
  5. 5. Illusion of competence • As the material becomes familiar, we gain fluency • There is a feeling we already know the material • In fact, we don’t
  6. 6. Use focused mode during lectures Review your notes later that day Practice and test Go for a walk or otherwise use the diffused mode There is a better way
  7. 7. Focused mode • Allows the mind to recognize familiar patterns • Problems related to these patterns are easily solved • Works in a sequencial way – step by step reasoning
  8. 8. Allow no distractions Keep your mobile turned off. Do not sit next to your best friend Try to follow the lecture. Take notes of the key points Try to connect what’s being said to other things you already know At the end of the lecture, write a brief summary of the main points covered Focused mode
  9. 9. Revision allows the information to find a place in the large store of the long term memory Start chunk formation Review your notes later that day
  10. 10. Chunk formation • Use focused attention • Understand the problem • Practice New chunks will be placed in your hanger (long term memory)
  11. 11. Understand the problem Top down learning Understanding the big picture
  12. 12. Chunk formation However, simple understanding how a problem is solved does not necessarily create a chunk that can be used later
  13. 13. Close the book and try to solve the problem by yourself The chunk (creation of neural patterns) will only be created by doing it yourself Bottom up learning How the chunk fits in the big picture
  14. 14. Practice As the saying goes, Practice makes permanent
  15. 15. Interleave But do not keep working on the same kind of problems for too long Change type of problems or change subjects
  16. 16. Deliberate Practice Focus on the most difficult part Spaced repetition Review frequently Bottom up learning Practice .
  17. 17. We can also look at chunks as if they were a puzzle. In the beginning, it is difficult to place the pieces.
  18. 18. We can also look at chunks as if they were a puzzle. We then get some pieces together – they can be seen as a chunk. The more chunks we have, the easiest it gets to place the next piece
  19. 19. We can also look at chunks as if they were a puzzle. Even if we did not know how the puzzle would look like, we start to see the big picture after having done some chunks.
  20. 20. If you think it is difficult to find the will to do the Practice…
  21. 21. Use a pomodoro
  22. 22. No, it is not for throwing at the teacher!
  23. 23. It is an “anti-procrastination” technique • Find a place where you can be concentrated • Shut out all interruptions • Work for 25 minutes
  24. 24. Use flashcards Test yourself • Do it consistently for short periods of time • Recall will allow the information to be stored in the long term memory • Use manual or computarized flash cards • In any case, make your own – you are the only person to know what you need to learn!
  25. 25. Do it every day (ok, you can take Sunday off) Eventually all the new concepts will be safely kept in the long term memory. New concepts will be easier to grasp, because you have now more chunks, more hangers to help connect the new material.
  26. 26. Revisions • Recall and think about the material in different places than the one where you first learned it • It increases the neural connections
  27. 27. Go for a walk or otherwise use the diffused mode There is a better way
  28. 28. Diffused mode • Now it is time for your brain to work on the material at his own pace • You can take a nap, go for a walk, go clean your room , and your brain will be working on the material
  29. 29. Diffused mode What we talked about Do you recall all the topics? Chunks Pomodoro Deliberate practice Spaced repetition Overlearning Illusion of competency Focused mode
  30. 30. Happy learning! . Don’t forget your diffused time!
  31. 31. Credits • Content is based on the materials covered in the course “Learning how to learn”, Dr. Barbara Oakley and Dr. Terrence Sejnowski • PowerPoint presentation template:Presenter Media • Cliparts – Presenter Media and Office.com • Photographs – my own
  32. 32. Thanks to: • Nicole Charest, for a very helpful review and the idea of throwing tomatoes • Cristian Artoni, for the link to the Pomodoro Timer

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