The learning issue
In this issue’s blog, Anna Barnes explains why it’s important to discover what type of learner you are…
In my last blog, I touched on the need to memorise specific points to aid you in your exam. I personally think this deserves a little more attention and should be discussed in plenty more detail. You may be lucky enough to have photographic memory but if you are anything like me, you can’t even remember what you did last week never mind memorising an entire book!
I would suggest that you first and foremost establish what type of learner you are. You may be a visual, linguistic or an auditory learner – or even a combination of all three. There are plenty of tests you can take online, which will help you find out what type of learner you are.
TIME WELL SPENT
As mentioned in my last blog, I used to think repetition was key. I used to write out the same sentence over and over again, but that was such a waste of time! However, now I have discovered that I’m an auditory learner, recalling works for me. When I’m learning specific principles or rules, I usually repeat each point out loud a number of times, without looking at the book. It may sound ridiculous but for me, saying things out loud has been a revelation!
Once learnt, I will then record myself. I listen to the recordings every now and again, especially before I go to bed as I seem to remember more at night than in the morning. But you can listen to your recordings whenever you want. A few months down the line you could be on chapter 10 and it’s difficult to remember what you’ve learnt on chapter one. So try this technique out and see if it works for you.
IF YOU WANT TO LEARN, TEACH!
Another effective method is to teach the information to someone else. This could be to a colleague, family member or a friend. If you explain the information to someone else, you not only have a better understanding of the information, but it also gives you more confidence when answering the question.
To end, I thought it would be useful to mention – as not everyone is aware – that there are a number of CII- and local institute-sponsored awards, both local and national, which are well worth an extra effort.
These are formally recorded by your employer and the institute, so for the ambitious among you, it really gets you noticed. I wasn’t aware of such awards, but I recently received the McNeil and Wallace Award, Liverpool Underwriters Association prize for the greatest merit in my M90 Cargo and Goods in Transit exam, which just shows hard work really does pay off.
THREE THINGS TO TAKE AWAY
- LEARN, BABY, LEARN – Online tests can help you see what methods are most effective for you
- THE BIG PLAYBACK – Record yourself then listen later, before bed is ideal
- TEACH FOR THE STARS – Explaining answers to someone else can really help you get information clear in your mind
Anna Barnes is compliance & technical services assistant at NMU
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