The brain is a filter, rejecting stimulus that repeats too soon or too late. MasterMindTM is technology for finding the best time to repeat, when the brain is sensitive. To learn touch typing, for example, a student needs more than 25 hours with "intelligent" software now on the market--or only 5 hours with MasterMind Typing.
1. The lag " . . . effect is highly robust, showing up under a variety of conditions and on a number of measures of memory." Johnston, Wm. A., & Uhl, C. N., The contributions of encoding effect and variability to the spacing effect on free recall, 2 Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Learning and Memory 153-160, 1976. Such measures and conditions include " . . . recall, recognition memory, and frequency-judgment tasks, using pictures, words, sentences, nonsense syllables, and letters." Hintzman, D. L., The Psychology of Learning and Memory, W. H. Freeman & Co., San Francisco, 1978, p. 332.
2. Kandel, Eric R., and Schwartz, James H., Molecular Biology of Learning: Modulation of Transmitter Release, 218 Science 439, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Washington, D.C., 29 Oct. 1982.
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The "Spacing Effect"
Cognitive psychologists have found improved learning with increasing delay between stimuli--up to a point of excess delay, after which a stimulus loses effect. Researchers call this the "spacing" or "lag" effect on learning. Their experiments employ various paradigms and measures of retention.1
While studying the neurochemistry of learning, other scientists have found the spacing effect in mollusks too.2 It is in the chemistry of all animals with a central nervous system.
Researchers have seen the spacing effect as an outcome rather than a means of teaching. Still, if one could schedule repetition for peak retention, the advantage is clear.
The difficulties of predicting a retention peak include variations in: learners, stimuli, the stage of learning for each learner and fact, and the lesson environment. During a lesson, the vital parameters change in rapid, complex ways that defy tracking by humans. [more]
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