Your path for most effective learning is through knowing
your capacity to learn
the process you have successfully used in the past
your interest in, and knowledge of, the subject you wish
It may be easy for you to learn physics but difficult to
or vice versa. All learning, however, is a process which settles
into certain steps.
These are four steps to learning. Begin by printing this and answering the questions.
Then plan your strategy with your answers,
and with other "Study Guides
Begin with the past
What was your experience about how you
learn? Did you
like to read? solve problems? memorize?
recite? interpret? speak to groups?
know how to summarize?
ask questions about what you studied?
have access to information from a variety of
like quiet or study groups?
need several brief study sessions, or one
What are your study habits?
How did they evolve? Which worked best? worst?
How did you communicate what you learned best?
Through a written test, a term paper, an interview?
Proceed to the present
How interested am I in this? How much time do
I want to spend learning this? What competes for
Are the circumstances right for success? What
can I control, and what is outside my control?
Can I change these conditions for success?
What affects my dedication to learning this?
Do I have a plan? Does my plan consider my past
experience and learning style?
Consider the process,
the subject matter
What is the heading or title? What are key
words that jump out? Do I understand them?
What do I know about this already? Do I know
What kinds of resources and information will help
me? Will I only rely on one source (for example,
a textbook) for information? Will I need to look
for additional sources?
As I study, do I ask myself whether I understand?
Should I go more quickly or more slowly? If I
don't understand, do I ask why?
Do I stop and summarize? Do I stop and ask
whether it's logical? Do I stop and evaluate
Do I just need time to think it over and return
later? Do I need to discuss it with other
"learners" in order to process the information?
Do I need to find an authority, such as a teacher, a
librarian, or a subject-matter expert?
Build in review
What did I do right? What could I do better?
Did my plan coincide with how I work with my
strengths and weaknesses?
Did I choose the right conditions? Did I
follow through; was I disciplined with myself?
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