At a dinner party two men were discussing The Right Stuff, a book about the Mercury space programme. While Ted went on and on about the technical details he had picked up from the book, Dan offered only a few comments. “Ted got so much more out of the reading than T did.” Dan later said “Is he more intelligent than I am?” The two men had similar educational backgrounds and intelligence levels.
(In this article, you will find the keys for quick learning)
It was later discovered that Ted just knew how to learn better than Dan did. Ted had made his brain more absorbent by using a few simple skills. For years, experts had believed that an individual’s ability to learn was a fixed capacity.
During the last two decades, however, leading psychologists and educators have come to think otherwise. “We have increasing proof that human intelligence is expandable,” says Jack Lochhead, director of the Cognitive Development Project at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Actually to learn the ways for quick learning is so easy. “We know that with proper skills people can actually improve their learning ability.”
Moreover, these skills are basic enough so that almost anyone can master them with practice. You should know the ways of quick learning. Here, gathered from the ideas of experts across the country, are several proven ways to boost your learning ability.
THE KEYS TO QUICK LEARNING
1-] Look at the big picture first. When reading new, unfamiliar material, scan it first. Skim subheads, photocaptions and any available summaries. This previewing will help anchor in your mind what you then read.
2-] Practise memory-enhancing techniques. These techniques, also called mnemonics, transform new information into more easily remembered formulations. For instance, to a student who cannot spell the word arithmetic, a teacher can teach a sentence that remains locked in mind for years: “A rat in Tom’s house may eat Tom’s ice cream.” The first letters of each word spell arithmetic. Although mnemonics were once dismissed by researchers, they are now considered an effective means of boosting memory – doubling or even tripling the amount of new material that test subjects can retain.
3-] Organise facts into categories. In studies at Stanford University, students were asked to memorize 112 words. These included names of animals, items of clothing, types of transportation, and occupations. For one group, the words were divided into these four categories. For a second group, the words were listed at random. Those who studied the material in organised categories consistently outperformed the others, recalling two to three times more words.
For example, to remember the names of all former U.S. presidents in proper order, cluster the leaders into groups – those before the War of 1812, those from 1812 until the Civil War, those from the Civil War to World War I, and those after World War I. By thus organising complex material into logical categories, you create a permanent storage technique.
4-] Discover your own learning style. What’s your style? Try some self-analysis. What, for example, is your approach to putting together an unassembled item? Do you concentrate better in the morning or in the evening? In a noisy environment or a quiet one? In a library or in your own room? Make a list of all the pluses and minuses you can identify. Then use this list to create the learning environment best for you. Whichever style works for you, the good news is that you can expand your learning capacity. And this can make your life fuller and more productive.
All these easy keys will provide you quick learning.
A. Mark the best choice.
1. “Ted got so much more out of the reading than I did” (line 4) can be rephrased as
a) “Ted got more reading materials than I did.”
b) “Ted prefers to read outside but I don’t.”
c) “I didn’t read as much as Ted did.”
d) “Ted learned more about the material than I did.”