Can drawing enhance learning?

We can view learning as multi-representational. We might, for example, learn through reading or listening, but we may also use diagrams, charts, schematics or video. When describing the working memory model I can refer to the different systems, such as the phonological loop and central executive and explain what they are for. But, in thisContinue reading Can drawing enhance learning?

What is test expectancy?

According to some descriptions, (e.g. Craik and Lockhart, 1972) memory is nothing more than a by-product of processing. The depth at which information is processed determines the strength of the memory trace and how easily we can recall it later. Information can be viewed as the raw material for creating knowledge, but the operations weContinue reading What is test expectancy?

Scan of baby's brain

The Problem with Blank Slates

Summary: Blank Slate (Tabula Rasa) views of human development erroneously claim that we are born devoid of innate mental content. From birth, humans already have in place the systems required for rapid learning. These systems include those related to object recognition, language, numbers and intentions of others. They are then fine-tuned as the infant interactsContinue reading The Problem with Blank Slates

The problem with gist

The term ‘gist memory’ usually refers to less detailed long-term memories, often (but not exclusively) episodic memories. However, our semantic memories often rely on these memories of events as we use situational cues to help us recall them. It then follows that errors here can have a knock on effect. When we read a book,Continue reading The problem with gist

Is there a learning personality?

We tend to identify different personalities intuitively. Some people we might describe as ‘live wires’ while others are more contemplative; others, still, might be prone to worry or are avidly curious. We often describe these differences using folk theories with a light smattering or psychology, so we might call the quiet people introverts and theirContinue reading Is there a learning personality?

The Importance of Looking Away

You might have noticed that when you’re talking to someone, it’s often difficult to maintain eye contact. Teachers might have noticed that when children are addressing the class or attempting to answer a challenging question, they will avert their gaze away from their audience. Psychologists call this behaviour gaze aversion and it’s thought to serveContinue reading The Importance of Looking Away

Creating Good Habits

(Adapted from Becoming Buoyant, 2020, Chapter 5) Do you like popcorn? For the sake of argument let’s assume that you do. Not only do you like popcorn, you are also an avid cinema goer and like nothing more than a large tub of popcorn to enhance the experience. This is a routine that operates likeContinue reading Creating Good Habits