Retaining Info in Accelerated Learning

accelerated learning

At Concorde, we feel like we help you accomplish your ultimate goal - to get into the health care career of your choice as quickly as possible.

To do that, however, means having to absorb coursework at an accelerated rate. Some of our accelerated learning programs take only eight months to complete. That means students are required to learn a great deal of information in a very short time. Not only must they learn it, but they also must be able to retain it and apply it when it comes to taking and passing applicable licensing and board exams.

That can be a tricky proposition. But it obviously can be done, as evidenced by the thousands of Concorde graduates working today in rewarding and successful health care careers.

When it comes to retaining information in a Concorde accelerated program, it might help to keep in mind a few tricks of studying and learning that Concorde and other instructors have developed and nurtured over the years.

Write it down

"I have a special phrase that I used for the students I taught in the past as a successful teacher," said Roberta Crisp, BSIS, Learning Resource Coordinator at Concorde Career College's Dallas campus. "I tell them you have to 'see it,' you have to 'say it,' you have to 'hear it,' and you have to 'write it.'" The last point is the most important - "you have to write it" - because when you write it, you engrave it in your brain."

And, Crisp stressed, with accelerated learning, you probably don't want to write it down just once.

"Repetition of material is also important," she said. "It needs to be reviewed at least four times in order to remember what you have learned. If you learn it incorrectly, it takes repeating 10-15 times with the correct information to get the incorrect information out of your head."

The Learning Pyramid

Crisp developed a PowerPoint presentation entitled, "Tips for Learning" that is led off by an interesting Learning Pyramid. The Pyramid stacks different methods of learning and studying in accordance with the percentage of student retention rates matched to those methods, according to National Training Laboratories in Bethel, Maine.

According to the Pyramid, after simply reading the material, an average of 10 percent of students retain information. Study with audiovisual props increases the average to 20 percent. Demonstration to others of the source material increases the average of 30 percent. Discussion of the material boosts the retention average to 50 percent. You can get all the way up to 75 percent retention by practicing doing. Finally, if you get to the point where you're teaching others the material you're learning, you can be among 90 percent of students who retain the information.

Strength in numbers

Gathering in groups and using written props also can be extremely helpful in retaining information while in a Concorde accelerated learning program.

"Flashcards are a great way to help," said Maryann Ochoa, LRC Coordinator/Penn Foster Coordinator/Test Proctor/Assistant Registrar at Concordes San Bernardino, Calif. campus. "Also, good study groups with great note taking can be helpful, because what one person might have in strength another might not and vice versa. If they are studying together on a regular schedule ... those are the ones that tend to excel."

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