What is Dual-Coding?

During the 1960s, Canadian psychologist Allan Paivio made an interesting yet seemingly simple observation; he discovered that people found it easier to remember concrete nouns that can be imagined compared to abstract nouns where images were harder to come by.  For example, if I were to present to you a list containing only words likeContinue reading What is Dual-Coding?

A Memory Primer

Memory is essential for learning. In fact, memory is essential for life. Without memory, we would exist in the perpetual present, a void where we are unable to recall a past and incapable of anticipating a future. We wouldn’t recognise our loved ones or be able to plan our futures. And we wouldn’t be ableContinue reading A Memory Primer

Making Memories

How does our brain go about making memories? And where are such memories kept for later retrieval?

The problem with guessing

(and the need for feedback) Guessing can be a useful strategy. Students might not think they know the answer to a question, but they quite often know what it is not, allowing them to reduce the pool of possible options. In the case of multiple choice questions, the sight of the correct answer can triggerContinue reading The problem with guessing

Schema theory and the nature of learning

Human knowledge is about much more than single concepts or hierarchical structures. Our long-term memories are awash with all sorts of information, from memories related to our own lives to current affairs, theoretical concepts and partially understood ideas.