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If you can be exposed to a fact, idea or procedure multiple times, you’ll retain it far longer than if you experience it only once.
Retrieval practice—where you shut the book and try to recall what you’ve learned without looking at it—is one of the most effective studying techniques.
Whenever you’re struggling to learn anything, always ask if you’ve mastered the basics.
A clever experimental manipulation found that the students who would have chosen passive review, nonetheless did better when they were forced to do practice instead.
This concept corresponds roughly to what we think of as our mental bandwidth. It can only hold a few items at a time.
The fix is to slow things down. Write out what you’re trying to learn on a piece of paper, and go through each sentence or step in a calculation one-at-a-time.
Instead of trying to understand the idea all at once, you need to ask yourself what’s missing to understand it.
We’re never actually doing two things at once. Instead, when we multitask, we’re quickly switching between tasks in our minds.
By obtaining only a superficial understanding, it’s harder to abstract the deeper principles behind things.
Knowing a programming concept, like recursion, for a test is one thing. Being able to notice that the current problem in your work would be best solved with a recursive algorithm is another.
The teacher often learns more than the student. Teaching something, even if just pretending, forces you to confront what you know and don’t know.
Genuine interest can’t be faked, but it can be fostered.
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