Key No. 4

The Recording, Revising, Retaining, Recalling and Researching Processes of the Mind



Having spent many hours, days and nights learning or preparing a subject

and then to forget part or all of it is unforgivable and unnecessary.



"I'll never remember that !", "how did you forget ?", "don't forget that !", "I knew you'd forget", "take a note of that or you will forget it", "it's on the tip of my tongue" are all familiar phrases to you.


These problems however become more serious when you are sitting for an examination, test or interview or when you are delivering a lecture, making a speech, or have to come in "on-cue". The frustration, stress, annoyance and concern that arises has been experienced by you on many occasions. Having spent many hours, days and nights learning or preparing a subject and then to forget part or all of it is unforgivable and unnecessary.

Mankind has been grappling with this problem since the beginning of time and has developed numerous solutions to assist you in remembering that which you are likely to forget.

Recording Process

In the previous chapter the principles and techniques of learning were detailed. The use of these techniques is one of the steps in the recording process of the mind. There are six steps in this process and these are as follows:


1.Develop a broad perspective on the subject being studied thereby creating a honeycomb of knowledge and questions about the subject. This will form the framework within which information to be remembered will be recorded.

2.Generate a genuine interest and curiosity in the detail of the subject thereby further facilitating the recording process. This applies as much to a scientific process, a concept in mathematics, the content of a poem, the theme of a speech or the lines of a play.

3.Understand clearly what has to be learned and apply the appropriate learning technique.


4.Link this acquired information into the overall subjectís framework.

5.The next step is to concentrate on locking the information into your mind. Periods of focused concentration for 30 to 40 minutes with planned breaks as rest periods are recommended, otherwise your concentration will lapse and the benefits of your recording will progressively decline and consequently your retention capability. Planned breaks can be looked on as rewards for work well done.

6. For major subjects provide an appropriate duration of elapsed time between study sessions. It has been proven that subjects learned over a period of days incorporating relaxation and sleep are learned more easily and retained for long periods. The elapsed time and the associated relaxation and sleep time allows the subconscious mind to formulate and order the information being studied within the overall subjectís framework and facilitates recall when required.

Revising Process

The next important process is revision. You will forget the details of what you have learned within 24 hours. Planned revision is essential. This must be carried out to a planned programme so that all aspects of what you have learned are retained for as long as you wish.

Initially the revision frequency should be high, tapering off to a periodic revision. A schedule should be designed to suit your own ability and your work requirements. In carrying out revision you should use the various notes, charts, tables and schematics you have created. In this way revision time will be kept to a minimum and the original material need not be re-read except for reference to specific detail when necessary.


Revision Chart

A wide variety of revision monitoring charts can be drawn-up to ensure the systematic revision of subjects. A typical revision chart would consist of columns and rows. The subjects being listed down the extreme right-hand column and provision to plan the subject's chapters or sections in rows across from right to left beneath a calendar complete with examination target dates. The target dates will be on the extreme left-hand side and will therefore be a constant reminder and motivator to revise.


Revision is one of the solutions to the age old problem of not being able to remember. In simple terms the solution is repetition but it is repetition ofinformation suitably prepared for your learning ability and repeated at a frequency suitable for your requirements

Retaining Process

The results of revision must however be tested. Prior to each revision session the success of the previous session must be assessed. An examination of the level of retention from that session must be carried out so that an awareness of the shortfalls in information can be corrected. Such an awareness will indicate what needs to be improved for this next session or if the frequency of revision sessions has to be increased.


Recalling Process( Remembering)

The more complete, dynamic and cross referenced your knowledge on any subject is the easier and quicker it will be to recall the particular information required or to compose any combination, variation orextrapolation necessary to answer a question or resolve a problem. The remembering process requires knowledge to be referenced and linked to other knowledge

Researching Process


Up to now we have been concerned with storing, maintaining and retrieving information however in this particular process we use the information with our skills of investigation and interaction to solve problems and with our imagination and divergent thinking to create new ideas and knowledge.


In other words, using the information we already have, in the case of problem solving applying the ability to clarify, decipher, relate, reorganise, substitute and adapt we find that resolutions are possible, whereas by applying the gifts of imagination, inspiration, inventiveness, originality and foresight we can create new ideas and knowledge.††


Key Points
1. The Dilemma of Forgetting
2. The Recording, Revising, Retaining, Recalling and Researching Processes
3. A RevisionMonitoring System



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