An important learning tip – plunge in for a second or third time even if though it may feel unproductive

The NY Times reports on April 19, 2011, at D6 an oddity about learning. “[I]f you study something twice, in spaced sessions, it’s harder to process the material the second time, and people think it’s counterproductive.” So, to explain further, if you have pored over a decision or a debenture, when you return later for a second round it feels difficult to dig in and learn more. Surface familiarity misleads your awareness. “But the opposite is true: You learn more, even though it feels harder.”

Repetition and practice makes a huge difference, despite what you may feel, and the superior way to learn. The article adds that “difficulty builds mental muscles, while ease often builds only confidence” (See my post of Nov. 19, 2009: spaced education and pre-tests.). Felt familiarity should not blind you to the value of diligent application to absorb and understand.

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