The forgetting curve.

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Did you know you forget in a curve?

We’ve all experienced this. You spend years at university, days in development, but you can only remember a few key takeaways. Half the time I can’t even remember where I put my keys, so how do learning and development professionals or adult students expect to remember training or studies in and around working life?


Fret not, a German psychologist figured it all out back in 1885…

Herman Ebbinghaus came up with a theory on memory retention called The Forgetting Curve. As the name indicates we do forget, in a curve, starting with 100% and ending at 20% - just a few key takeaways.

So how can you combat The Forgetting Curve in vocational training and development when you don’t have a schoolteacher quizzing you and no University exams looming and that you had plenty of spare time to study for? It no doubt strikes fear into the hearts of learning and development professionals that 80% of their work is lost from the memory of their students.

Ebbinghaus found two different methods that were most effective with memory retention.


- Spaced repetition


- Mnemonic techniques


What and huh? Spaced repetition is a learning tactic that utilises a spacing effect. The spacing effect essentially says that if you have a question and you can only study it a few times, then your memory of the answer will be strongest if you spread your study sessions out over a longer period of time. One of the worst things you can do is pack your study sessions close to each other. And Mnemonic techniques are short phrases, acronyms and visual aids to help you remember, like a flash card or a rhyme.

Ebbinghaus also found that the best time for the first repetition is within twenty-four hours of the initial training, can you imagine getting another day off for training or study 24hrs after the first? Or getting staff back into a training room for “revision”. No me either.

Spaced repetition can be done manually, but digital platforms like the Mindmarker App remove room for human error, and hey, if we forget what we learn, we might forget to revise what we have learnt too.


Why choose spaced repetition as part of training reinforcement?

Spaced repetition is a tactic used in training reinforcement to increase knowledge retention. Reinforcement programs use your learning objectives and expected behaviour outcomes to create a timeline of messages.Your learning objectives are then spaced out over the course of this story to increase knowledge retention and create lasting behaviour changes.

Training reinforcement uses your content and objectives, to create a goal-based, structured revision program. Instead of only focusing on knowledge retention, training reinforcement can also focus on creating lasting behaviour changes.


How is training reinforcement different than other solutions?

There are many solutions being used in the training industry for knowledge retention, so why choose a training reinforcement app?


- You can personalise it to suit your training and development goals


- Mindmarker uses spaced repetition


- It is an automated delivery and delivers the content to the devices your participants already use


- Mindmarker has the ability to help you increase the effectiveness of training and gives you the stats to prove it works via the analytical tool



Read more about how MCI Solutions can help you with Mindmarker 


Original article by Anthonie Wurth - Mindmarker Founder

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