Due to how the human brain is wired, on average, a person cannot retain the information that is acquired in a learning scenario over time. Most of the learnings cannot be recalled after a few days or weeks, unless they review the newly acquired knowledge at a certain pace. Our traditional learning methodologies are not able to help learners retain their learnings after a period of time.
In order to make learning Mandarin easier, a team from CCTV utilizes a new methodology called MandarinEasy, which uses a strategy called Spaced Repetition on teaching Mandarin to non-mandarin background speaker. Spaced Repetition is the most effective instructional strategy that is recommended. It is a learning strategy in which learning or practice is broken up into a number of short sessions spread out over a long period of time. This is contrary
to the traditional ‘mass practice’ method where learning is imparted with the help of longer training sessions within a short period of time. The spacing effect (increasing spacing between learning sessions) in the distributed practice method helps maximize retention in learners by strengthening our long-term memory.
It was Hermann Ebbinghaus – the German Experimental Psychologist who helped us realize this fact (about forgetting) after extensive research, plotting his results using the ‘forgetting curve’ – a graph that revealed the relationship between forgetting and time. The term forgetting curve relates to the decline of memory for human beings over time, and the graph shows how information is lost over time, if it is not practiced through reinforcements or reviews.
Learners find it easier to memorize materials that are meaningful or relevant to them than those that are meaningless or non-relevant.
1. The amount of time that learners take to learn dramatically increases with an increase in the amount of learning material.
2. Learners find it easier to relearn than to learn everything initially itself. Also, after each subsequent re-learning, learners take longer time to forget their learning.
3. Learners find learning more effective when it is spread out over time than when it is taken in a single marathon learning session.
4. Learners forget their learning most rapidly right after learning occurs. And, their forgetting slows down over time.
These findings have great significance for learning professionals while developing learning interventions. Techniques to tackle the issues above include making learning materials smaller (micro, byte-sized learning), easy, relevant, powerful, and hence memorable.
Overcome memory retention with the magic Ebbinghaus forgetting curve
We are very honored to be selected by CCTV as the sole partner in Canada for the pilot project of a new learning Mandarin Methodology called MandarinEasy.