There are two types of remembering;
- General remembering – this is where you do not need to remember everything you are learning, this could be a general concept or information about an event without the exact detail.
- The second is what is known as VERBATUM. You need to use this for key facts and dates, legal documents, formulae learning your part in a play or spellings.
When sitting in a lecture you often only need to keep the key issues in your mind and not worry too much about the detail. Your own research or private study can fill in the gaps when it comes to an essay. But if you are required to quote facts or dates, or the correct type of tool to use for a specific task, then verbatim is essential.
- To remember something verbatim, you do need to understand what it is you are learning about. Scientific formulae make no sense unless you know the link between chemicals and their individual formulas. If it is about a period of history you need to know who was involved and what dates the event took place.
- If you must remember a certain fact or date, use a coloured pen to highlight key words or facts. This way you know it is important.
- Once you have your notes you know what to concentrate on. If you learn the important bits the background often falls in to place.
- You will find memorising a lot easier if you actually enjoy the topic. Read around the subject and get to know as much as you can to fill in your knowledge.
- Remember to re-read the important points and those that you need to know the most. Regular review of your notes, especially from earlier in the course will help embed the details into memory.
- Don’t jump from one topic to another. It is far easier to remember big blocks of information if you stick to one topic at a time, and take a break between topics so you don’t confuse the information.
- Don’t just read it, think about it and analyse the information. Think about why something was said or happened, or why a particular tool is being used. This way you are getting a deeper understanding of the facts.
- If you need to remember a chart or diagram, re-write it out in your own way. Try to remember the facts without looking; cover the original and see how much of the detail you can add to the diagram.
- Try linking topics so that you can see a logical progress or see how different topics go with others. This way you get a better understanding of how broad topics fit together
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