Like every student, do you invest a lot of time in studying the same concept repeatedly; and still end up forgetting the next moment? Do you find it difficult to recollect your answers; you seem to know it all in your head but cannot put it down on paper?
If your answer is Yes and if you think about how to supercharge your learning and become smarter, then you are in the right place.
We are going to tell you the best way to learn and absorb absolutely anything. The technique that we are going to discuss here can be applied in any subject or in any topic.
It’s called “The Feynman Study technique”. This is named after the famous physicist Richard Feynman. He is known for his work in the theory of quantum electrodynamics.
This technique is derived from Feynman’s studying methods when he was a student at Princeton.
You can use this study technique to quickly learn new concepts, bridge up the knowledge gaps, Learn a new skill or study more efficiently. You can use this technique to end your struggle with tough subjects and chapters, which is why you are here.
If you are learning some chapter or a derivation you would want to remember it at least till your final exam day if not a lifetime. The Feynman learning Technique helps you turn information into knowledge and recollect it whenever you want to.
There are three steps in Feynman’s Study technique.
Or rather I could say pretend to teach a child. Decide what chapter or concept you want to master. Read about it, learn it. And once you think you are ready take a blank paper. Write the topic that you want to teach. Now write everything you know about this topic. From start to the end and in as simple as possible.
Yes, that’s the trick, you have to write it in as easy and simple words as possible. As if you are explaining this to a child, someone who has just some basic knowledge. So when it comes to science and maths, make use of diagrams and charts to make your explanation simple.
Another thing to remember is that the attention span of a child is very limited, so you have to make sure your explanation is crisp, covers the concept and is in simple terms!
Identify your Knowledge gaps
Here is where the actual learning happens. Knowing where you are struggling. Find the gaps in your understanding. Are you not able to explain it or are you are having trouble simplifying the critical terms in simple language or are you forgetting?
Filling these gaps is what will help you build your learning curve.
Understand it like this, if someone asks you about something, and if you aren’t able to explain it in simplest form; rather use big terminologies, you have limited words to use.
When you can say something in multiple ways using different words, that’s when you have understood it really well.
So once you know the gaps, go back to your source material; your text bok, your notes, etc. Read it, understand it and keep doing this till you are able to explain every detail from start to end.
Organize and Tell a story
Gather everything you have understood and narrate the whole piece with a concise explanation.
Practice reading it aloud, as if you are giving a lecture or a seminar. Here doing this if you stumble or jumble up the words or even complicate the sentence, then it only indicates that you still need improvement.
Again go back to step 2. Keep repeating this until you are able to recite it in a smooth flow like a story. As simple sentences, you can use, stronger is your understanding.
The Feynman Learning Technique is a great method to develop mastery over sets of information. Once you do, the knowledge becomes a powerful tool at your disposal.
You can use this to test your understanding – works great for weekly class tests, be it for any concept/ ability /skill.
The Key is simplicity – teach someone- Understand your gaps-Tell a story.
Imagine how you will explain the answer and Visualize yourself explaining.
Motivate yourself to do this for your weak areas and weaker subjects and master them.