Learning strategies are the set of processes that allow better assimilation of information. This process of assimilation is what we call learning and can be enriched with techniques, dynamics, and methods that we call strategies. In this post, we are going to offer you a set of skills that can help you enrich your own dynamic or learning method. Not only for studies at school or universities, but for any content or information you want to learn and manage.
What is learning?
Learning is the way individuals assume a certain knowledge or information and this can be developed differently by different social groups. Learning can change according to people and content. There are people who learn more in practice, people who are more empirical and other people who learn with concepts and abstractions.
Whatever your case, the important thing is that you are clear about what you want to learn or what you are having learning difficulties. This way you can better choose the learning strategy that best suits what you need.
Learning strategies do not simply fall from the sky. Every person already applies some in their day today. It is not until the moment that we begin to have some difficulty to learn some content, that we realize the need to look for strategies or carry out actions to learn.
Sometimes what we need to learn is a daily thing, such as a telephone number, a process on the computer, a new way of cooking a dish or, in the case of more seriousness, immense contents for a test at the university. Here we list some of the main learning problems for which you can apply the strategies.
Differences between Technique and Strategy
Techniques are concrete and individual processes that allow us to execute an action more efficiently, that is, more quickly and effectively. Techniques often refer to ways of doing things.
There are different types of technique depending on the context in which they are applied. From cooking techniques, such as how to cut some meats or vegetables so that their cooking is better; techniques to empty concrete into gigantic building structures.
In any case, the techniques allow to carry out a venture. Several techniques together to solve a possible problem can lead to a strategy. Learning strategies, so far, will be defined as the set of techniques and processes we use to overcome a learning problem or to address a learning situation.
List of the best learning strategies
Here we will offer you a complete list of several learning strategies. You can use them as you want, individually or in combination. But the most important thing is that you are clear about your objective, what you want to achieve, so you can think better about the learning strategy that best suits what you are looking for.
Learning strategies by memorization involve recording the entire content in the way it is presented. They are more effective for short or short content and you can help repeat the content, sing what you want to learn in the form of music, with a rhythm. You can also memorize using acronyms with the first word of a sentence.
For example, if you have to learn about the countries of Central America memorizing the word GUSANICO PAHN, which corresponds to Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, and Honduras.
Learning strategies by association help us especially with new and complex content because we can link them mentally to other more well-known content.
Imagine that you are a student who must learn content about English, some irregular and complex verbs. You can learn a song that you like and from which you know the video clip, so you can associate the verbs with their actions. You can also associate content with paintings, photos, landscapes, experiences of your life, poetry, etc.
Motivational learning strategies have less to do with content and more with the disposition and encouragement of the person. They are also called support strategies and have an effective part of the person who must learn.
Sometimes we don’t have much time or desire to see this, but it is crucial to know how to understand and know each other. If you have been through a difficult experience or concern, your mind will probably invest its energies in turning that experience over and not learning.
Learning by doing things is an ideal strategy for those who learn more specifically. But it can be applied for various contents.
For example, it may be better to learn a recipe by doing it at the same time that you are following the step by step, but you can also learn about the interaction of molecules in chemistry if you actually make small models of the molecules and play a little with them.
Cooperation in learning strategies refers to collaborative learning, where two or more people comment and help each other with the contents.
This serves to address issues or content that the two people handle or that the two people are studying. That way, one can clarify doubts with the other. But if there are doubts at the same point, we must find another person who knows better about the matter.
Collaborative learning as a learning strategy can be carried out using the competitive instinct of many people. But it works best with people who are naturally more competitive.
Offering a prize and placing two people or groups to compete to achieve some knowledge and test it can be an excellent strategy to achieve rapid learning.
Giving instructions and following them is such an everyday and obvious task that many times we do not think of it as a learning strategy. But many times, not following the instructions can make us venture along more complicated roads and get nowhere.
How many times does a teacher not tell you to read the instructions first before answering a question or looking for some information in a text? Emphasizing following and giving instructions can be an excellent learning strategy.
Repetition often falls into memory learning strategies, because it can be a mnemonic strategy. Either way, constantly repeating a phrase, a poem or the content you have to learn makes it easier for us to memorize the content. How many of us did not learn the multiplication table by constantly repeating the numbers?
Learning strategies by review can also be understood from assessments. It seems paradoxical, but assessments should be learning opportunities and that is the challenge for many teachers and students.
Making a complete review of the content you must learn, whether to take an exam, take a test or not, help you strengthen your knowledge and ensures learning. This learning strategy merits preparation and can be used within the gamification of education.
Essays are ways of developing some content in writing and it is also an excellent learning strategy for those who learn by writing because they fix knowledge through writing.
Some people use newspapers as ways of expressing feelings and reflecting on everyday life, imagine writing about the content you should learn and they are giving you problems.
The organization is a learning strategy that involves sorting the contents according to the criteria that work best for you. For example, if you have many things to learn, you can start with the easiest content and leave the difficult ones for later, or vice versa.
You can also organize what you must learn by complexity, subject matter, area of knowledge and even mark the contents with post-it, colors, and bookmarks. That way you facilitate the orderly absorption of information.
This learning strategy will allow you to maximize the results by controlling the stimuli and what you will learn, along with what you are producing in the process. Imagine that you are studying political processes in a certain period in history.
Probably as you read, you realize the number of events and events that can help you explain some process. The best thing is not that you study them all, at some point, your search has to stop and focus on what you consider most important. But this will always depend on you and what you should learn.
This learning strategy involves sharing ideas with other people about a given topic. Many people have the ability to learn and assimilate information as they problematize and discuss it with other people.
If you have trouble learning something, try discussing it with other people such as your classmates, family, and friends. Surely you enrich your perspective.
The analysis is the learning strategy that makes use of reflection, personal or group, to deepen content and learn it.
With the analysis, people become almost specialists in content because they understand well what it is, its origins and current changes.
15. Map composition
Very similar to the association, this learning strategy uses illustrations to establish knowledge. When there are several levels of complexity in the contents, it is an excellent strategy because it allows you to visually learn the connections between ideas.
In this way, what once seemed an unintelligible concept is now an image with connected words that are easy to understand.
Learning strategies will allow you to better fix knowledge, but there will be no real learning if knowledge stays as mere information. In that sense, the digital world gives you the possibility to learn about art by visiting museums, for example. When you have to learn about geography you can visit almost every city in the world online. Even when you have to learn about physics and atoms, you can access content that illustrates very well the interaction of particles. Take advantage of the digital world so that you enrich all the learning strategies that we mention more and take advantage of digital learning with online courses and eBooks, for example.