Thursday, July 9, 2015

Holistic Learning

Holistic Learning - Scott Young
  • In our brains information is not organized neatly into boxes but it is linked to other information we have.
  • So if we form multiple constructs and find links between them, then we should be able to retrieve them easily.
  • Since they will be linked like a web, even if we lose (forget) one link, we can easily work out the whole domain based on the other links.
  • To form constructs, we need to create models which can be simple ones just to understand the concept at hand.
  • Once the models are formed, then can be linked together to form constructs.
  • This works well in fields which is built upon concepts like science, math, relationships etc. but it will not work on fields just built arbitrarily like law, vocabulary etc.
  • It also doesn't work on skills which are learnt subconsciously by practice like golf or any sport.
How can we build good constructs
  • To form models, it would be helpful to viscerally experience the concept. It is not just visualization but sight, sound, touch and feel the thought. You can start by drawing the concepts on paper, but with practice we can do this entirely in our mind.
  • We can form models by visceralization but they will not be linked, we can use metaphors to link the models. We can do this by playing a game of 'this reminds me of..' even though they seem ridiculous at first, you should be able to form links which would strengthen the construct.
  • In this stage, we need to test our construct to reduce errors and fill any holes it might have. The best way is to solve problems with the concepts we have learnt. If we are having to solve the same problem again and again, it means we haven't formed models and constructs well. Just studying wouldn't really strengthen the model. Active recall helps test the models as we don't have anything else to fall back on.
You can read the book here for a more thorough explanation. 

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