Spacing EffectOpen Access

Spacing Effect

We remember things better when repeated over time and across environments

We forget quickly, but the greater the number of cognitive associations we develop with an idea, the more likely we’ll remember it forever…

Butler et. al., (2014). Integrating cognitive science and technology improves learning in a STEM classroom. Educational Psychology Review.

The study

Setup

Setup

40 students were taught a topic and either given the respective homework once instantly or 3 times over the next 3 weeks. They then had an exam a month later.

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Results

Results

Those who had the homework spaced out over time performed much better in the exam than those who were asked to do it immediately  after learning.

Study graph
np_read_2490885_000000

Butler et. al., (2014). Integrating cognitive science and technology improves learning in a STEM classroom. Educational Psychology Review.

Key Takeaways

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1

Spread out the learning.

Research shows that spaced repetition is the most robust means of learning but is rarely used by companies. Most knowledge is delivered once and forgotten, wasting money and time. Develop shorter learnings spread over time, using different tools, both digital and physical.

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2

Use it or lose it.

Knowledge only sticks when we use it. After reading a book chapter, summarize learnings into bullet points, a list of actions, or even better, become the teacher. Blinkist could send some simple interactive questions after readers have finished a book. Use Slack app QuickQuiz to follow up Lunch & Learns with a Tiny Habit of bite-size questions. 

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3

Make progress trackable.

Learnings apps like Duolingo and Memrise create powerful Feedback Loops through points systems, daily goals and leaderboards to create positive reinforcement. Tracking progress gives us a sense of growth and improvement.

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Spacing Effect

Spacing Effect

We remember things better when repeated over time and across environments

We forget quickly, but the greater the number of cognitive associations we develop with an idea, the more likely we’ll remember it forever…

The study

Setup

40 students were taught a topic and either given the respective homework once instantly or 3 times over the next 3 weeks. They then had an exam a month later.

Results

Those who had the homework spaced out over time performed much better in the exam than those who were asked to do it immediately  after learning.

study graph
np_read_2490885_000000

In detail

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Certainty Effect
We crave clarity over chance and make costly sacrifices to get it

Like it or not, we're all hard-wired to seek out information that helps us reduce uncertainty over the future. We'll explore:

• How Certainty works as a behavioural concept

• Examples from the wild that use it well

• How you can use certainty in your work to improve experiences!

So join us. It'll be fun and engaging. You can be certain of that!

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Certainty Effect
We crave clarity over chance and make costly sacrifices to get it
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