To reread. Technique of study 4/8.

To read several times the examination material is one of the most popular tactics between students of all the ages, in addition to emphasizing. To put an example, used it 65% of the students of psychology in a 2003 study (1). And a 65% seem to me little€¦ In other texts they affirm that until a 80% of students they use the technical re-reading as of study.

As much current students use it as those of better notes. Also those that suspend. It was my technical €œstar€ when I studied for my oppositions and was also one of my favorite techniques during the race.

WHY HE IS SO POPULAR?

  1. Because it is easy and he does not require previous training.
  2. Because he is fast: the second following readings and have been less time than first.
  3. Because he is comfortable: it can be made when you are tired and even boring study.

The mechanism by which it seems to work is because the re-reading improves the information processing, including the conceptual organization and the extraction of main ideas. That is to say, it is not that you remember more doing, but also you understand them better.

We are going to continue answering questions on this method with the inestimable help of the revision of the subject that published Dunlosky in 2013 (2).

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WHAT SAY SCIENTIFIC ARTICLES ON THE EFFECTIVENESS TO REREAD?

Indeed, many works have found that to read several times a text he is advantageous against reading it 1 single time. This effect is very robust and it is repeated in multiple studies. Most of the studies have taken control of university students.

WHEN TO REREAD?

If the examination is closely together, it seems to be equal of effective rereading in a same session of study that in different days, whenever the examination is made immediately after the last re-reading.

Nevertheless, when the examination is not immediate, but it is realised 2 days later, seems clearly better to reread to each other in spaced sessions (even several days, according to some studies).

It is important to consider that the scientific studies use relatively short texts, that is to say, that at least 2 times in a same session of study can be read, in the same day. But that usually does not happen with the immense majority of the examinations in the Faculty.

BE PREPARED SIMULTANEOUSLY TWO CAN EXAMINATIONS WITH THIS SYSTEM?

Yes, serious interferences have not been observed when different texts are studying.

HOW MANY TIMES IT IS NECESSARY TO REREAD THE MATERIAL SO THAT HE IS USEFUL?

One has seen that most of the benefit is obtained from the second reading. Nevertheless, this has been seen only in €œmassive€ res-reading (that is to say, in the same session of study).

It is not known if to read 3 times a same subject he is more advantageous than to read it 2 times when the re-reading is spaced. Here science does not make use to us, so you will have to decide by your experience€¦ or the time available.

In my case, in the race it needed 3 reviews to go safe to an examination, although the time it often forced to only 2 readings (followed of his consequent repetition aloud or writing, it is understood).

*En an occasion I used the passive re-reading (that is, without trying to repeat later immediately) for an examination of Literature of Secondary in which they only demanded to me to remember data. The material occupied about 14-15 folios. I was able to memorise it with some 10 res-reading. He is not applicable to final exams of university level, I am afrhelp.

HOW I KNOW IF TO REREAD A SUBJECT IT MEANS THAT ALREADY I KNOW IT TO ME?

Perhaps some simple concepts are clear only with the second reading. But you must verify it autoexaminando on the reread thing, that is to say, separating the notes to you and reciting or rewriting the content.

The main risk that you run with the re-reading is the self-deception, or a €œillusion of competition€. When rereading, the material is to you familiar (you know in what color is underlining, in what place of the page is a concrete table), and that can make you think that you dominate the content.

IT SERVES FOR ANY TYPE OF EXAMINATION?

The criterion used in the diverse studies has been the free memory and the memory based on keys, as to fill up spaces in target and to answer short questions on data.

Nevertheless, the results in questions type true-false test and have been less firm. And there are doubtful findings in questions that imply to make inferences and applications. In this type of questions the re-reading did not contribute advantages, either has only been useful for skillful students the more.

WHAT CONCLUSIONS REMOVE TO DUNLOSKY AND CABBAGES

Although the re-reading has demonstrated to be effective to remember data with very diverse types of materials, is not clear that it improves the understanding of texts, nor to what extent its effectiveness depends on the previous knowledge and the intelligence of each student.

In comparison with other techniques (as the self-examination), the effectiveness of the re-reading for these authors is low.

MY FINAL ADVICE

  1. Beam active readings, in which you look for to identify main concepts and to relate to previous knowledge. On the contrary the risk of not assimilating the read thing is run.
  2. It spaces the res-reading, mainly in examinations with greater volume of notes.
  3. After each reading, it tries to recall the read thing (for this, you can use cards, although for his elaboration you will need at least one first reading).
  4. In weekly or quinquennial examinations to the Stupid style, with little volume of notes, you can secure to good results with followed res-reading the day previous to the examination.

Other entrances on study techniques:

REFERENCES

1. Carrier LM. College students' choices of study strategies. Perceptual & Motor Skills 2003; 96:53-56.

2. Dunlosky J, Rawson KA, Marsh EX, Nathan MJ, Willinghamd DT. Improving students' learning with effective learning techniques: Educational Promising directions from cognitive and psychology. Psychological Science in the Public Interest 2013; 14:4-58.

Almudena Trinidad
almudena@hshanemd.net

I am otorrinolaring³loga doctor in a hospital of Madrid and Professor Asociada de Medicina in the UAM. I help Medicine students to develop more effective techniques of study to obtain better notes, to remember during more time and to feel like more happy insurances and with its studies.

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