More Effective Learning - A Simple Technique
More effective learning can be accomplished simply by spending more time memorizing and reviewing information. The problem with that approach is that there is only so much time that you can devote to any one pursuit. A better approach is to use techniques that make learning easier in less time. Here is an example of one.
More Effective Learning By Teaching
Suppose you want to learn about economics, and more specifically about the way that the money supply affects the economy. You read about it, but it just doesn't "stick." Then a friend asks you what you are studying, and you start to explain. You have a book or some of your other study materials in front of you, so you refer to these and tell him how the "velocity" of money - the number of times money is loaned out, deposited in banks and reloaned - can increase the money supply.
Suddenly it is starting to make sense to you. The more you explain what you are learning to someone else, the more you remember the material. This is normal. Perhaps one of the most effective ways to learn something is to teach it to another.
There are a couple problems with this "learning technique," however. The first problem is that you have to find someone who is willing to listen to you. Such victims, or "students" may be tough to come by. The second problem is the time this will take. You not only have to spend the time to find your listeners, but then you have to spend a fair amount of time "teaching" them the material.
More Effective Learning - A Better Way
Fortunately there is a solution to these problems. You can get much of the benefit of teaching if you can vividly imagine yourself teaching the material. This can totally change your perspective and make your learning more efficient.
To develop this ability to mentally "teach" while studying, it may help to first do some real teaching. Do a little bit of real teaching with a friend, if you have never done much explaining and teaching before. This will give you an idea of how to explain things. It also will help you more vividly imagine the mental lessons you'll be giving in your head.
Now, as you study, always keep the idea in mind that you will be teaching what you're learning. Vividly imagine how you will teach it. If, for example, you were studying evolution, you would see yourself writing an example on a chalkboard. You would look at your imaginary students and hear yourself explaining how natural selection isn't about individual animals adopting to their environments, but about those that are not already suited to it dying out, leaving the more suited ones to reproduce.
You'll notice that these imagined lessons go much faster than real ones, and your students will only interrupt you with relevant questions. You'll also notice that you can remember the material much better when you use this exercise in imagination. It is a powerful technique for more effective learning.
About the Author: Copyright Steve Gillman. For more on How To Increase Brain Power, and to get the Brain Power Newsletter and other free gifts, visit: