The Learning Process
San Diego Figure Skating Communications
a non-profit educational organization
Short and Long Term Memory is a cognitive skill
Every minute of our day, in which we are not sleeping, our brain is receiving all sorts of information from the following sources:
It is a normal part of aging to experiencing a decrease memory recall as we age. There is a proactive wait to delay and reduce the effects of aging by the use of memory training. Some individuals, from childhood, struggle to remember names or classroom lecture material. Such occurrences should be investigated for physical causes by a neurologist.
It is common for individuals, who are involved in extremely intense classes, seminars, or training sessions, to experience a dramatic inability to retrieve the information in the following hours, days, or weeks after the presentation. Technology allows the combination of color graphics, charts, plus audio & video in PowerPoint presentations that the attendees can record on their cell phone, handouts, or as notes via paper/computer laptop.
When we pay attention in a lecture, the verbal information first goes into the primary or short-term memory. When we rehearse, recite, and or paraphrase the data and concepts, part of it is transferred into our secondary or long-term memory. The parts that we paid the least attention to or are least interested in, is not retained and forgotten.
information is "stored" or "dumped" depends on the:
Developing a Short Term Memory
Some people have a
limited ability to hold even small amount of information in their short
term memory. The cognitive skill
that is their “working memory” is weak and needs to be strengthened.
memory training can really help.
testing tools include the Woodcock Johnson Tests of
Cognitive Abilities (WJ III-COG) and the Woodcock Johnson Tests of
Achievement (WJ III-ACH). The WJ III-COG is the gold standard of
cognitive skills testing, and is used by psychologists and educators
across the country to measure brain skills strengths and weaknesses.
Recognition occurs prior to the recall stage. It is much easier to recognize the correct answer on a multiple choice test when five options are listed compare to recalling the correct answer without a list of options. Enhancing information recall also assists in achieving effective long-term memory.
It is extremely important that the individual fully understands new material before it is converted into long term permanent memory. A good technique for understanding is formulate the concepts into a narrative that is expressed in a written or oral form. If you are unable to do this, then your understanding lacks clarity demonstrated by the inability to form a clear and correct memory.Many students hesitate to ask an instructor to explain/clarify a point that is unclear to you. This is associated with the fear of being the only one who doesn't understand; however, it is very likely that it also is unclear to others. A good instructor appreciates the opportunity to answer questions. Sometimes, because of time constraints to cover a specific amount of material requires questions to be reserved at the end of the presentation.
Remembering forms an original, clear trace in the brain. This initial information is of vital importance because it is more difficulty to change incorrect impressions than to initially store correct impressions in long term memory because of the effort to unlearn before attempting to relearn.
Connect Learning New
Information/concepts to an Established Knowledge Base
Reciting the material, even just once more, significantly increases retention, so try to utilize the technique whenever possible. Hermann Ebbinghaus, a psychologist and researcher, has reported that each additional recitation (after you really know the material) strengthens the mental trace deeper establishing a base for long-term retention. For many people, by the time they achieve bare mastery, there is little time left. As a result they are eager to go on to something else.
Recitation can take
When reviewing your notes immediately after class by vocal recitation, you will not only be consolidating the new information, but also strengthening the neural messages sent to your subconscious brain.
It is important to gather the information in note form according to categories, and information clusters prior to reciting them. The most effective method is to cover the notes and then recite them aloud. After finishing the recitation, check for accuracy. Do not attempt to memorize and recite the material word for word; instead using your own words explain the material to a friend or fellow student. When you become comfortable in verbalizing the material, you know it!How Recitation Works.
As you read the words in a sentence or paragraph, the primary or short-term memory holds the thoughts in your mind long enough for you to acquire a sense of the sentence or paragraph. Due to the very limited capacity, as you continue to read, you replace the words and ideas of the previous paragraphs with the subsequent paragraphs.
As we contemplate an idea, conveyed by a sentence or paragraph, it has a chance of moving on into the secondary or long-term memory for permanent storage; However, there is no guarantee that it will be stored in long term memory. Whether new information is "stored" or "dumped" depends on our reciting it and on our interest in the information.
It is normal to
when there seems to be little or no gain. This is occurrence describes
a plateau in
be caused by: fatigue, loss of interest, or
returns from the continuous use of inefficient methods.
To others, a plateau is a pause between stages of understanding that continues until the individual acquires a new insight or "break through "that signals the start of a new learning stage. A lower stage of an understanding or skill development may actually inhibit or even interfere with progressing to a higher level. For example, learning to recognize individual letters of the alphabet interferes with learning to sight read words and later learning to read word-by-word can become an obstacle to reading by phrases or sentences.Plateaus or periods of slower progress in learning are inevitable. Parents, teachers, and coaches should not allow slow progress to become a source of discouragement. Learning usually is still be taking place, although at a slower pace that requires the perspective of observation over months, not days of weeks. It helps if the individual acquires the tools that allow a self analysis that results in improving learning habits in academics and sports. Sometimes slower period of learning may be due to stress, fatigue, poor nutrition, and/or lack of sufficient sleep. If this is true, the most efficient choice is to temporarily drop the activity for a period of a few days for R&R (Rest and Recovery) to recharge our "mental and physical" energies.
Each student learns at their own pace that depends upon their inherited learning ability. Some individuals acquire knowledge and new skills at a slow pace compared to those who seem to pick up things at a much faster pace. Slow or fast learners should be able to learn the material equally well, if provided with a stress free opportunity without time restrictions. There is evidence that both rate of learning and rate of retention can be improved with practice.
The Principle of Neuro-Transmitter Depletion
The length of time one spends studying or attempting to read for content will, at some point, exceed the time we function efficiency and our retention begins to suffer. Researchers indicate that the average student cannot exceed on the same subject for more than about four consecutive hours, even with short breaks every hour. What occurs is that fatigue, boredom, sometimes slight disorientation may occur. Too much consecutive studying, even if the material being covered is relative simple concepts or an easier subject area for more than four consecutive hours event with 10 minute breaks each hour.
PDF Tips for Assessing Cognitive Skills for Decision Making Tips for Assessing Cognitive Skills for Decision Making. (Source: MDS Manual). Intent: To record the individual's actual performance in making everyday decisions.
PDF Functional Assessment of Cognitive Transit Skills The test was developed based on a Functional Skills List developed by professional who does psychological or educational assessments to determine if a person has cognitive disabilities.
The following internet links have been gleaned from personal communications
combined with information from public institutions and athletic organizations/
associations that have a web presence with information concerning team and
individual sports programs.
All materials are copy protected.
The limited use of the materials for education purposes is allowed providing
credit is given for the source of the materials.