Memory is the ability to store, retain, and recall information. We known that those who are blessed with good memory usually score well in examinations. This is because any learning process or examination involves the application of memory of memory, though the extent may depend on the type of examination. If your memory is fine, you would easily recall the information you had once mastered.
Some feel that relying on memory is not a healthy way of learning. However, effective learning for examination does require memorisation. Imagine that you are writing an examination in physics. If you try to derive from fundamentals the various formulae required, you may not be able to complete all your answers for want of time.
Memory Power may be classified as short-term and long-term. Suppose someone tells you a 7-digit telephone number. You may carefully listen and write it out in your phone book. But after a few minutes you may not be able to recall the number. Perhaps that is the reason why you need a phone book. The number remained in your memory only for a short while.
Long-term memory power involves information you retain for long durations, either consciously or unconsciously. The sequence of a serious accident in which you were involved will be etched in your memory for long without any conscious effort. On the other hand, you would have put conscious effort to commit the multiplication table to your long-term memory. Many instances of learning may be considered as the conversion of short-term memory into long-term. We easily remember matter that has some meaning.
You may not find it easy to remember a set of 25 letters in a given sequence. But you have no difficulty to remember the meaningful sentence ‘If there is a will, there is a way’. The key factor is that the sentence has meaning.
You would have had the experience of certain lessons being difficult to remember, since you do not get their meaning. If the words carry some sense we learn the idea easily. If we make an effort to translate the tough matter we wish to remember into something that can be taken in with ease and delight, we make both learning and memorization more effective. Learning by rote without grasping the meaning is no learning at all.
It is often said that you forget certain things because you have to remember more important things. Trying to recall an idea frequently will make it firm in your memory. Suppose you are trying to learn by heart a poem. You may apply the technique of over learning. You recite it a few more times after you have learnt it. This would ‘ engrave the mental trace deeper and deeper, thus establishing a base for long-retention’.
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