Posts Tagged ‘Primacy’

Article Title: Remember Recency?

Publication: Integrated Learnings: eLearning

Summary: Recency is the tendency to be more likely to remember information from the end of a sequence. This article describes how eLearning can harness this simple, yet powerfully effective tendency to help learners retain new skills and knowledge.

I’ve seen many eLearning lessons end with reiterating a lesson’s objectives. This seems to miss the opportunity to take advantage of the recency effect. Instead, we can end eLearning lessons in ways that prompt learners to recall important information or have a meaningful moment of insight.

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Article Title: Memorable Ways to End an eLearning Course

Publication: Integrated Learnings: eLearning

Summary: eLearning courses often end with a slide that lists the topics covered during training. However, the recency principle suggests that instructional designers can use these last moments of training more effectively to help learners remember key content. This article suggests memorable ways to end an eLearning course while effectively reinforcing its content.

Illustrative story. We’ve talked about using stories to convey tacit knowledge in eLearning. Similarly, a story that illustrates application of key concepts offers an effective and easy-to-remember way to summarize content. If it includes humor, even better.

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Article Title: Primacy and Recency Can Help You Learn

Publication: InternetCE blog

Comments: In an earlier post on this blog, I described an article I wrote about the concepts of primacy and recency for the Integrated Learnings: eLearning site. The content I contribute to that blog is written for an audience of instructional designers – the folks who design and develop training. The focus of that article was the need to start and end courses in ways that leverage learning, since those are among the chunks of a course that learners are most likely to remember later.

I posted a new article to the InternetCE blog earlier today, Primacy and Recency Can Help You Learn, which also discusses these concepts. The difference is that this one is from the learner’s perspective.

Although you’re probably not trying to memorize a sequence of words when you take that insurance continuing education course, this same principle applies to sequences of information in a course. It can also apply to the sequence of topics you review if you’re studying for a licensing exam.

Yet another thing I love about writing – it offers an outlet for exploring a topic from multiple angles.

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Lots of twos: I’ve had two posts on two blogs come out each of the last two days. Both are blogs I regularly contribute to.

The concept explained in this post is simple: we tend to remember the start and end of things better than we remember the stuff in the middle. Anyone who has taken some kind of learning psych or cognitive psych type of course has formally learned about these primacy and recency effects (and of course, the concept still makes perfect sense to those who haven’t taken those courses).

But interestingly, I’ve noticed that many folks in training don’t apply these concepts to their work. In other words, even though they know that learners are likely to remember how courses start and end if we put effort into making it memorable, much of the training I see tends to start and end in very boring ways.  It’s a lost instructional opportunity. And that’s the point of that most recent ILS blog post.

Again, not rocket science: In order to remember something newly learned, you have to apply it. Otherwise, it’s quickly forgotten. While “applying it” can mean using that newly learned information to complete a task, “applying it” can sometimes be as simple as talking about it.

I’m not the greatest at remembering obscure trivia…but if odd facts come up in a conversation, there’s a decent chance I’ll remember the factiod later.  This article explains why that is and encourages readers to talk to peers about what they learn in continuing education courses.

So there’s my writing updates.

On a personal note, I’m still looking forward to heading to Elko for some cowboy poetry fun (not to mention a much needed four-day weekend)!  My husband and I are hoping to volunteer at the event for one of the days we’re there.  Nothing specific is planned yet, but I’ve been in touch with the organizers, so hopefully something comes through later in the week.  Regardless, we’ve got a fun little road trip and an interesting weekend ahead!

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