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Successful Learning Simplified

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Being smart helps. Working hard helps more. But working effectively helps most of all.

There's a great deal that research can now tell us about how to study effectively. For 20 years, I've been reporting on research into memory and learning, and explaining how these findings can be translated into practical advice. In earlier books, I have presented a lot of detail on strategies in specific areas: note-taking, mnemonics, practice and revision. In this guide, I attempt to provide an overview of how to approach your learning, and the strategies you should consider using.

The book covers:

  • preparing for learning
  • approaching a text
  • reading
  • taking notes
  • building understanding
  • navigating non-linear environments
  • dealing with lectures
  • memorizing
  • revising
  • building expertise in skills
  • how specific subjects differ in their needs & demands.

The book can be used as an adjunct and quick reference for those who have the more in-depth workbooks, or as a simplified guide for those who want the bottom-line without the detail.

This is not a book for students who want a magic bullet, who want a five-minute 'answer' to effortless study! But students who want to know that their time and effort are being used wisely, that their diligence will be rewarded with better marks and more long-lasting learning, this guide may be the answer they've long been looking for.



About this book


How memory works

The nature of long-term memory

The importance of working memory

A lot of editing goes on!

Approaching your learning


Goal setting

Evaluating the text

Getting an understanding of the text



Main points


Levels of processing

Active reading

Reading expository texts

Active reading strategies

Main points

Taking notes

Notetaking makes information meaningful


Creating summaries

Main points

Learning through understanding

Understanding is rooted in the connections you make

Asking questions

Making comparisons

Concept maps

What this means for notetaking

Reading non-linear material (on the web or in computer modules)

Navigating a hypermedia environment

Problems & benefits of animations

How to learn effectively in hypermedia environments

Getting the most out of lectures

How lecture notes are different from textbook notes

Are there special strategies for taking notes in lectures?

Different approaches to lecture notetaking

Memorizing verbatim


Rhythm & rhyme

Keyword method

First-letter mnemonics

Simple list mnemonics

More complex list mnemonics

Main points


Types of retrieval practice

How often do you need to practice?

Spacing your practice

The ten principles of effective practice


Critical factors in mastering skills

The ten principles of effective skill practice

Specific Subjects






Putting it all together




Formats: Paperback, E-book (Kindle), E-book (ePub)

Size: 205 pages; 6.8Mb

Publisher: Wayz Press (December, 2014)


978-1-927166-20-8 (pdf)

978-1-927166-21-5 (mobi)

978-1-927166-22-2 (ePub)

978-1-927166-19-2 (paperback)

ASIN:  B00GXJHUUU  (Kindle)