Learning something new takes time. But the process can definitely enhance for the best. It is possible to restructure and change the way you learn. All it takes is constant practice and monitoring to see a significant change. Work on each learning habit but do not expect a miracle overnight.
We have assembled for you the 12 most effective learning practices.
- Active learning
- Determine your learning style
- Avoid Memorizing
- Concept mapping
- Frequent Assessment
- Do not multitask
- Mastery learning
- Build on previous knowledge
- Teach others
- Peer teaching
- Use tricks to enhance memory
- Change your settings
Let us start off by taking a closer look into each.
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This proposes to put your learning to practice. While employing practical knowledge, you increase your understanding by manifolds. Moreover, you immerse deeper into the learning experience. But it only happens with regular rehearsals and applications.
No amount of lectures or seminars can do what an active, hands-on learning can. If you are struggling to acquire or learn a skill, it is beneficial to gain practical experience. For instance, if you want to build fluency in a new language, start by using it in everyday conversation.
Determine your Learning Style
Every individual is different and so is their learning style. Some prefer taking exhaustive notes for understanding, while others learn better from images and videos. This highlights the difference between learning styles. You can increase your learning ability by knowing your method and habits.
For this, you need to research the various types of learning styles. For instance, read works by psychologists like Howard Gardner, Carl Jung, and David Kolb. Their intensive research will give you an overview of this aspect of learning.
After gaining insight, begin experiments with different learning techniques. Record your improvement and performance to make worthy changes to the way you learn. This is a learning practice that dramatically influences your education process.
Your goal with learning should be to gain through experience and not cram dull information. Focus to build an understanding as it will prove beneficial to your long term retention. In fact, merely memorizing things won't promote self-confidence or satisfaction. They can be truly achieved only by developing an absolute understanding of the subject at hand.
Concept mapping is a visual learning technique where concepts, ideas, and terms are visually represented. This is a highly used system because it promotes:
- better understanding
- quick retention
- clear relationship analysis and evaluation
- utilization of both left and right brain faculties
When learning a skill, you can profit by forming concept maps. If you are learning how to paint, draw a concept map that shows the fundamental steps and key facts to remember.
When you put your learning to test it shows the various learning gaps, areas of improvement, and your strong suit. Moreover, studies also show that taking tests leads to better long -term retention.
A great strategy would be to segment your learning and take self-assessments to check your progress.
By testing yourself you can grade your learning, make modifications, and significantly improve.
Do not Multitask
Experts suggest that multitasking negatively affects your brain's functionality and deteriorates focus. In fact, you become prone to errors. Therefore, to be productive, multitasking should be avoided at all costs. This stands true to accomplish effective learning too.
If you want to learn a skill, begin slow, and focus on every individual aspect of it. This will promote mastery learning and is an all-round process. Do not rush to shift from one task to the other or juggle many at the same time. After all, the goal is to learn better, not quicker.
Mastery learning was a concept given by educational psychologist Benjamin Bloom. According to it, every learner should proceed at his own learning speed and master a single concept before proceeding to the next.
You should also use mastery learning techniques when learning something new. The idea behind this technique is to build a sound base to progress and grow forward. Through mastery learning, all your training endeavours and stages can greatly benefit. It transforms learning into a highly personalized process.
If you are learning how to cook, begin by first mastering various types of chopping styles. This way you can include mastery learning in whatever you do.
Build on Previous Knowledge
In an attempt to study something new, we often forget it to connect it with our previous knowledge. This way it becomes difficult to retain information, for it is often broken down into individual sections. As per the best learning practices, it is required that you tie all your studying together. This is called relational learning. It is supported by the theory of constructivism. According to this, new information is linked to old knowledge and builds on it. Theories by Jean Piaget, John Dewey, Jerome Bruner, and Lev Vygotsky have proven its worth.
If you piece information in such a manner, it helps in:
- active knowledge construction
- enhanced comprehension
- links concepts for fast retention and revision
- builds a deeper connection with learning
When learning new skills, look for hooks to hinge your old knowledge to it.
Your learning can remarkably benefit when you teach others. This is because teaching requires a certain level of clarity of concepts. Therefore, with teaching, you apply your knowledge to use and expand upon it. The same holds true when you teach a skill or share a newly read concept.
Hence, after completing your learning, start teaching. Find someone and try to put across your daily or weekly learning. When you break information into your own words for others to understand, it is then that learning becomes permanent. The idea is to share your learning and get instant feedback.
This is very commonly seen in schools. Although we did not understand its purpose back then. But now it is actively used. Whenever you are stuck, you instantly reach out to your friend so that he simplifies the task for you. This is because peer tutoring is a means to promote:
- active learning
- student interaction
- Individualized learning
- deeper understanding
Use Tricks to Enhance Memory
Your knowledge should not be dependent upon memorizing instructions or concepts but rather build on practical education, as stated above. You can use memory enhancement techniques to develop superior intelligence for the same. A few of these include:
- Using mnemonic devices
- Reading out loud
- Getting plenty of sleep
- Revise often
- Avoid Unproductive cramming
Change your Settings
Your surroundings are detrimental to your learning. A perfect learning atmosphere promotes a smooth and unobstructed training session. Moreover, it is a conducive environment that motivates you further and contributes to heightened focus.
The best learning exercise is to give your settings enough thought. Make it as distraction-free as possible and keep it immaculate.
If you find yourself struggling, it is best to instantly give yourself a break. Go for a run or indulge in a refreshing activity. Otherwise, try to revamp your settings.
Those were the best learning practices to learn a skill more effectively. But the most underrated of all is to never stop the learning process. Continuous learning is the gateway to become well informed and worthy. New learning adds to your personality and makes you more likeable. This is the time when skill sets have defeated college degrees. We understand this shift and have come up with a swift micro learning oppourtunity for avid learners and skilled individuals. Download KoolStories now to fulfil all your learning demands in a safe and social atmosphere. But be sure to use these practices and reap the most out of your learning hours.