27 Aug 2018

EFFECTIVE LEARNING TECHNIQUES TO HELP STRUGGLING STUDENTS LEARN

Many students are being left behind by an educational system that some people believe is in crisis and students often need to read and understand lots of information by extracting more important ideas, it requires discarding less important ideas and connecting ideas within a text.

Some students seem to breeze through their school years, whereas others struggle, putting them at risk for getting lost in their educational career and not reaching their full potential. Parents and teachers want to help students succeed, but there is little guidance on which learning techniques are the most effective for improving educational outcomes. This leads students to implement studying strategies that are often ineffective, resulting in minimal gains in performance.

Improving educational outcomes will require efforts on many fronts, one part of a solution involves helping students to better regulate their learning through the use of effective learning techniques.

One potential reason for the disconnect between research on the efficacy of learning techniques and their use in educational practice is that because so many techniques are available, it would be challenging for educators to sift through the relevant research to decide which ones show promise of efficacy and could feasibly be implemented by students

What some students do not yet realize is that the quality of study strategies matters almost as much as the amount of time they spend using them. Student characteristics include variables such as age, ability, and level of prior knowledge and materials vary from simple concepts to mathematical problems to complicated science texts.

Techniques that can help students learn are;

Elaborative Interrogation

Anyone who has spent time around young children knows that one of their most frequent utterances is “Why?” (perhaps coming in a close second behind “No!”). Humans are inquisitive creatures by nature, attuned to seeking explanations for states, actions, and events in the world around us. Fortunately, a sizable body of evidence suggests that the power of explanatory questioning or prompting students to answer “Why?” questions  can be harnessed to promote learning.

Summarisation

Summaries can influence learning and retention; summarization can be simple, requiring the generation of only a heading or a single sentence per paragraph of a text or it can be as complicated as an oral presentation on an entire set of studied material whereby students often have to learn large amounts of information, which requires them to identify what is important and how different ideas connect to one another and write summaries of to-be-learned texts. Successful summaries identify the main points of a text and capture the gist of it while excluding unimportant or repetitive material, Although learning to construct accurate summaries is often an instructional goal in its own.

Rereading

This involves taking a test again judging by the fact that they might make a better score on a second trial. Rereading is one of the techniques that students most frequently report using during self-regulated study. For example, college students in an upper-division psychology course are reported using rereading as a technique when preparing for course exams.

Practice testing

Testing is likely viewed by many students as an undesirable necessity of education, and most students would prefer to take as few tests as possible. This view of testing is understandable, given that most students’ experience with testing involves high-stakes summative assessments that are administered to evaluate learning. This view of testing is also unfortunate, because it overshadows the fact that testing also improves learning. Meanwhile, more than 100 years of research has yielded several hundred experiments showing that practice testing enhances learning and retention

Educational Contexts

Mostly, elaborative interrogation enhance learning in representative educational contexts with few studies conducted outside a laboratory setting. One particular study conducted a study on undergraduates enrolled in a Biology course. The study was situated during class meetings in the adjoining lab section. Students completed an assessment of verbal ability and prior-knowledge exam over relational but indistinguishable material to the target one.

However, different study strategies work better for different people, and knowing your learning style or techniques will help you understand which study methods work best for you and knowing the brain need the exercise of consistent learning to help students build on their ability to score top grades.

 

 

Article by Blessing Bassey

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