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Concentration/Mem

ory
by
Sri Sundari Purbohadi

Contact:
sundari_purbo@yahoo.
com.sg
Medical Education Unit
Muhammadiyah
University of

Remember----When you are trying to memorize facts or


material:
Study the most important information
first
Make sure you understand WHAT you are
trying to memorize. If you do not
understand the materialSTOP and
clarify or define what you need to know.
If you do not understand it, chances are it
will be more difficult for you to memorize
it.

You may be unable to


concentrate due to
distractions:
External
noise, radio, TV, phone calls, improper or
uncomfortable study environment,
unforeseen events
Internal
stress, worrying about grades, not focused,
anxiety, too many other things to do, did not
get enough rest

Lack of Concentration could


be due to:
Not studying in the right environment:
o Try a distraction free environment ( examples:
no TV, no radio, no music, no cell phone, no
noisy people)
o Be comfortable. Uncomfortable furniture may
reduce concentration. (It is not a good idea to
study in bedit is easier to nod off there)
o Reduce possible stress. It is not a good idea to
study around other people that are stressing
out about their own studies.

Make a commitment
Make the task at hand personal
Take the task seriously
Make a detailed plan to finish it
Dont procrastinate

Remember:
Students with better study methods and
strategies score higher on their exams.
Every student is different. What works
best for you, may not work well for
someone else.
The following memory
methods/strategies are suggestions.
We hope you can improve your study
habits, concentration and memory.

What Affects Memory: 3 Basic


Processes
Encoding- the process of readying
information
for storage, making it your
own
Storage the saving of information for
future
use
Retrieval recalling information, which is a
continuous process

Focus on Memory

Link whatever yourre trying to learn with what you already know
Learn from the general to the spesific
Intend to remember
Break up material into small unit
Use mnemonic
Match material to be learned with the most effective technique
Application a new material summation
1. clarify
2. motivate
3. categorize
4. organize
5. plan
6. review

Memorization
Strategies:

Acronym
Acrostic
Chunking
Repeating
Rhymes & Songs

Acronym:
According to Merriam-Webster online, an
acronym is a word (as NATO, radar, or
laser) formed from the initial letter or
letters of each of the successive parts or
major parts of a compound term; also : an
abbreviation as FBI
Example: SCUBA is an acronym which
stands for Self-Contained Underwater
Breathing Apparatus
(Acronyms work well when you need to
memorize facts)

Can you remember this list of


words?
(you have 1 minute)
boy
under egg

lemon

behind over
around
timid

This time---try using the acronym

BLUE BOAT.
boy

lemon

under

egg
behind

over

apple

timid

(you have 1 minute)

Acronym examples:
NFL = National Football League
LSAT = Law School Admission Test
FBI = Federal Bureau of Investigation
IRS = Internal Revenue Service
EPA = Environmental Protection Agency
FDA= Food & Drug Administration

Acrostic
According to Merriam-Webster
on-line dictionary, an acrostic is
a composition usually in verse in
which sets of letters (as the initial
or final letters of the lines) taken
in order form a word or phrase or
a regular sequence of letters of
the alphabet.

Acrostic example
You may heave learned this sentence
to solve mathematical equations:
Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally
This acrostic tells you to do the
following functions in this order:
Parentheses, Exponents,
Multiplication, Divide, Add, Subtract

Chunking
Chunking is one of the more commonly
used mnemonic techniques especially when
memorizing numbers. It is based on the
idea that short term memory is limited in
the number of things that can be contained.
A common rule is that the average person
can remember 7 (plus or minus 2) items in
short term memory. When you use
chunking to remember numbers, you
decrease the number of items you are
holding in memory by increasing the size of
each item.

Chunking (continued)
Can you remember this 16 digit number?
20091776181215678

Now---try to break it down in groups of 4


numbers:
2009

1776

1812

5678

(this is called chunking!)

Repeating
Example: An ice breaker game that has
everyone in the circle go round and say
My name is Sally and I like seashells.
Then, the next person would say Her
name is Sally & she likes seashells. My
name is John and I like jelly. Then the
next person would have to repeat all the
people & items before he says his name &
what he likes. This is an example of the
memorization strategy called repeating.

Repeating (continued)
Once you are able to repeat about 5-6
items in a row, then try adding an
additional item and so on. This strategy
seems to work well with all subjects.
Repeating can also be accomplished,
when you can teach the material to
another person. This makes you repeat
the material in order to tell them.

Rhymes & Songs


Example: When you were young, you probably
memorized the Alphabet song to the tune of
Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
According to www.brighthub.com: One type of
learning strategy that works well for many
students is creating songs or rhymes for
memorizing multiplication facts. Look at the
popular Schoolhouse Rock series. Many students
have learned their multiplication tables with
these catchy tunes.

And
While you are studying and trying to
memorize information----Remember
to practice relaxation techniques
which can be reviewed in the Power
Point presentation titled Test
Anxiety.

Tips for improved


concentration:
Get plenty of rest and eat well. (concentration is
more difficult if you are tired or hungry)
Be a good manager of your time
Free your mind of preoccupied thoughts. When trying
to concentrate, it is best to do so with a free and
clear mind.
Focus strictly on the task that needs to be completed.
If you feel your attention drifting away from the task,
just simply say to yourself STOP! This helps to
bring your focus back to where it needs to be.
Stay positive! Concentration loss tends to lead to
negative thinking.

Improve Concentration

Eliminate distraction by considering:


1. the place your study
2. time of day your study
3. your physical condition
4. background noise
Focus your attention by:
1. setting a special goal
2. timing yourself
3. varying the use of your skill and the level of difficulty of
the
material
4. giving youself reward