One of the most difficult things to understand about learning is how to retain, remember and recollect information long after you have acquired it. It goes without saying that any competitive examination requires you to remember wide range of information from various sources. The difficulty is never in grasping the information; the difficultly almost always is in retaining that information and recollecting it.
This is where a few simple learning strategies will help in enhancing your ability to learn, retain and recollect information. First a few basic things about learning; there are two fundamental streams of knowledge. Knowledge acquired through emotions and factual knowledge acquired through repetitive learning.
All the information we gather around us can be grouped into two main categories of emotional and factual information. The way we grasp emotional information and factual information are very different and it is important to understand this difference. If you are able to clearly understand the difference between these two streams of information, it becomes extremely easy to remember and recollect.
Emotional information is always remembered through thought associations and personal experiences. Emotional information can only be understood and experienced by connecting it to our personal experiences. The more deeply one is involved in the emotional content, the easier it becomes to remember and recollect it.
For example there is a lot of difference between reading about the Bhopal gas tragedy and living through it. And yet when you are reading about it, if you are able to experience the pain and suffering of the people; understand their story and connect with it; it becomes that much easier to remember what exactly happened that day.
This type of information is purely emotional and requires great involvement and intensity while reading about them. The more involved you are, the easier it becomes for your mind to form thought associations that make this type of reading real, hence very easy to remember. So the simplest way to remember an emotional content is by feeling the experience and making it real.
The second type of factual information can only be remembered through repetitive learning. Remembering names, dates, places and events can best be done if you are able to come back to it again and again. It is impossible to remember factual information through emotional connectivity. You have to develop a system of learning that allows you to come back to factual information again and again till it becomes a part of your memory.
In short, divide your learning into factual and emotional content. Approach both of them differently. This will allow you to remember, retain and recollect information very easily.