New studies have pinpointed a few techniques that can help students get the most out of studying, but those techniques haven’t caught on because they seem to directly contradict common wisdom about good study habits, the New York Times reports. For example, students are often encouraged to pick one room as a study base, but one U.S. study has shown that alternating rooms actually improves attention, as does studying distinct yet related concepts in one sitting, instead of focusing on just one thing. In one experiment from 1978, psychologists found that college students trying to learn a list of 40 vocabulary words in two different rooms did much better than those who studied the words twice in the same room, results that have proven true for other topics, too. In one new study, experts found that college students and retirement-age adults could better distinguish painting styles among 12 unfamiliar artists after seeing mixed collections than just looking at a dozen works from one artist grouped together.
Experts question tried-and-true study techniques
Common wisdom on study habits might be all wrong, they say
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