Memorising Through Osmosis

  1. Hello all. I was talking to an old friend of mine this weekend about good ways to memorise information. He told me he used to do to remember passages word for word by recording himself, and then listen to the recording in an endless loop. To prove how good it worked he recited the To be or Not To be soliloquy that he had learned for high school. The thing is that my friend is 37, and had to memorise this 20 years ago! He said that he would listen to it as he was drifting off to sleep, or in the evening when he was relaxing. He called it memorising by osmosis.

    What I do sometimes, and it works for retention of info before a test, is to write lines like they would make me do in primary school when I did something wrong, which was most of the time. I find it works but only for a very short while, and it has helped for a few exams.
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  2. 5 Comments

  3. by   firstyearstudent
    Quote from Bicycleboy
    Hello all. I was talking to an old friend of mine this weekend about good ways to memorise information. He told me he used to do to remember passages word for word by recording himself, and then listen to the recording in an endless loop. To prove how good it worked he recited the To be or Not To be soliloquy that he had learned for high school. The thing is that my friend is 37, and had to memorise this 20 years ago! He said that he would listen to it as he was drifting off to sleep, or in the evening when he was relaxing. He called it memorising by osmosis.

    What I do sometimes, and it works for retention of info before a test, is to write lines like they would make me do in primary school when I did something wrong, which was most of the time. I find it works but only for a very short while, and it has helped for a few exams.
    Yes, I have found that writing down facts and figures over and over helps, in addition to thinking up mneumonics and acronyms with which to prompt myself. However, I find I quickly forget information learned this way following an exam. In addition, I can't remember the last item in a series without going through the whole thing. (And your friend would probably find it hard to remember the second to last line of Halmet's soliloquy unless he went through it all).

    It is far superior to learn the whys, wherefores and becauses to keep this stuff firmly in your head and immediately accessible. Putting fact and figures in context really makes a difference. But when an exam is looming I have limited time and resort to memorization by any means.

    With all due respect, your friend's feat does not seem that impressive. Actors (especially stage actors) memorize large amounts of texts and then must recite them with feeling. And they are not especially talented at memorization. It is far easier to memorize a narrative (which is why many use them as mneumonics -- oh, oh, oh, to touch and feel...).
    Last edit by firstyearstudent on Oct 22, '06
  4. by   missninaRN
    Maybe the key to your friend's ability to memorize was the fact that he was an auditory learner? And it has been proven that the material we read or review at bedtime is more likely to go into our longterm memory, so listening to his tapes at bedtime would be even more effective.
    It sure wouldn't hurt to try out his technique and see if it works for you.
  5. by   DoneIn08
    Don't laugh.. but I swear I did better on my exams.. when I slept with my book under my pillow. I am a Licensed Massage Therapist also.. and when I had big exams.. I would be up studying all night.. and sleept for maybe 2 hrs before I had class.. and 1 night I for whatever reason had my book under my pillow.. I swear it all soaked into my head when I fell asleep.. I did awesome on that exam!

    Hey.. whatever works
  6. by   Achoo!
    I have fallen asleep listening to my ATI video. Hopefully some of it stuck LOL
  7. by   Natkat
    I haven't found memorization to be useful in nursing school. It simply doesn't work for me. I have to be able to think it through.

    What I did find extremely useful was applying the information to the nursing process. I try to take the new information and put into where it belongs in the nursing process (you know, assessment, diagnosis, plan, etc..) and I remember it better.

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