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Some highlights: Most of this research is on college students who are currently in the context of institution-regulated learning. Spaced testing and information retrieval improves later retrieval even for items that people believe they have already learned. Massing (including cramming) helps, but more learning is achieved in the same amount of time by interleaving -- alternating between material. For example, the French mathematics curriculum with algebra and geometry learned in alternating weeks over two years, probably works better than American curriculum of one year of geometry and a different year of algebra. Similarly, the semester system probably produces more learning that the quarter system, and intensive blocks of one course taught in 3 weeks is probably worst for students. Perceptions of how easy things are guide perceptions of learning success, but difficulty is desirable, because it is correlated with more learning. People under-estimate how much they will learn when they invest time on studying and under-estimate how much they forget over time. Guessing at an answer before learning the answer improves learning. People can self-teach to the test: preparing themselves to succeed on certification exams or interview questions without learning material well. Americans (and others?) overestimate the role of individual learning ability differences and underestimate the role of cultural, family, and formal instruction on how to learn.



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