The Echoes of the Mind (69) Learning


We apprehend only what we already half know. ~ American author Henry David Thoreau

Learning is the process of acquiring information and depositing it into memory. Learning is the process of acquiring information and conceptualizing it, which involves correlating patterns that stem from phenomena. Information which is valued is termed knowledge. Knowledge is commonly acquired through observation or inference, but one may directly apprehend via intuition. While learning often results in new concepts, it may alternately fortify or disabuse existing concepts.

Abstract knowledge is built analogically from more experience-based knowledge. ~ Belarusian cognitive scientist Lera Boroditsky et al

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Ours is primarily a visual and visceral world. Primates more readily learn from visual and tactile experiences than from audition.

I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. ~ Chinese proverb

This bias partly owes to these media convincing us that the world is ‘real’ (as opposed to an elaborate ruse). Contrastingly, sounds are not experienced as embodied.

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Intent to learn does not directly compel memory encoding. Facts must be pounded in by repetition, but not repetitively. Lessons are best learned by being mixed in with other activities. Forgetting reinforces learning.

Forgetting is the friend of learning. ~ American psychologist Nate Kornell

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With motor skills, trial and error is an integral part of human learning.

In learning a new motor task, there appear to be two processes happening at once. One is the learning of the motor commands in the task, and the other is critiquing the learning, much the way a ‘coach’ behaves. This second process leaves a memory of the errors that were experienced during the training, so the re-experience of those errors makes the learning go faster. ~ Iranian cognitive scientist Reza Shadmehr

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All learning has an emotional base. ~ Plato

A key to learning is attaching import. Even very simple pieces of information may be beyond recall if there is no expectation that they will be needed again.

We learn through our senses, even if the experience is only seeing written symbols. Tangible expression facilitates retention.

Learning represents an incremental evolution which accumulates through experience: at first, in relation to already-known concepts, but which then may be refined through usage and application, such that once-novel ideas become self-standing.