真正高效的学习,其实是自言自语()

伊利诺伊大学的心理学家布莱恩·罗斯报名参加了一堂计算机科学课程。他已经好长一段时间没有上过一堂课。他的胡须与秃头让他看起来很显眼。他比其他所有学生都大了十岁,这让他十分紧张。

但是他有个优点。罗斯是学习型研究者,他很熟悉一种十分有效却常被人低估的学习策略——自我解释。这个方法围绕着询问自己一些解释性的问题,比如“这是什么意思?它为什么重要?”大声问出这些问题很管用。一项研究表明,进行自我解释的人比那些不这么做的人,学到的东西多出近三倍。

为了超过他的年轻同学们,罗斯问了自己很多问题。他在阅读老师布置的文章时,不断地向自己提问。每读完一句话,一个段落,他都会问自己:“我刚刚读了什么?它们之间是怎么互相衔接的?我之前有过这种想法吗?”

课程结束之际,罗斯发现,尽管他在计算机方面相对缺乏经验和陌生,但他可以回答出很多其他学生答不出的问题,并且理解其他学生不懂的编程方式。他告诉我:“有时候我的优势在于我关注的是更大的图景。”

在现代经济中,没有什么技能比学习能力更为重要。从全球来看,学习是对未来收益的高度预测。企业或许会支付培训费或者报销大学课程,但是很少会教获得技能的本领。

以下是如何在自我学习中运用自我解释:

1、跟自己对话

自言自语听起来不太好,常常会被当成有心理疾病的症状。在公众面前这么做一点也不酷。但是跟自己对话对于自我解释很重要,并且通常对于学习有帮助。

一方面,它能让我们慢下来。当我们更加有意识地这样做的时候,通常我们能从一段经历中得到更多。

另一方面,和自己对话也能帮助我们思我所思。当我们沉浸在跟自己的对话中,我们通常会问自己这样的问题:“我怎么知道我知道什么?我有什么困惑?我真的知道吗?”不管我们是在听播客的时候按下暂停键,还是在阅读一本手册的时候停下来思考一会儿,通过思我所思,我们都更有效地提升了自己的技能。

2、问问为什么

自我解释让人有表达好奇心的冲动,否则这种好奇心可能一直不会被发现。

我们会问自己,“为什么?“如果我们对一个话题真的了解,回答这种问题并不难。比如关于你长大的那个小镇,如果我问你一个问题,你很快就能回答出来。只有在我们不了解的时候,“为什么”这种问题才更难回答。这也是一种学习某一领域专业知识的方法。

为了以实例说明,让我们一起来看这样一个问题:“为什么会有波浪?”可能我们中有一些人可以摸索出一个基本答案:“波浪与风有关。当风吹过水面,水面就会泛起涟漪。”

但是紧接着就必然会出现这样的问题:“为什么风可以吹起水?”或者“为什么没有风时也有波浪?”这里我们先留一个悬念。至少我是这样做的,然后我开始寻找一些答案,快速浏览网页,理解能量是如何在水面运动的。最终我学到了更多东西。

3、总结

总结是一种进行自我解释的简单方法,因为用我们自己的语言去表达一个想法能够促进学习。

或许在你的生活中有这样的经历。比如:回想一下,当你在杂志上读到一篇文章,然后向朋友详细说明文章的论点。这就是一种总结的形式。这么做了之后,你就更有可能从文章中学习并且获取信息。

再举个例子。假设你最近在写一封邮件,描述你在Netflix上看了一部纪录片后的感受。在这个过程中,你充实了自己的想法,致力于一种更加直接的意义建构。总而言之,你将会对这部电影和它的主题有更为丰富的理解。

你可以在自己的生活中这么做。下一次当某个人——你的老板、配偶或者朋友——给你发出一套复杂的指令,花时间口头重复这些指令。这样把所有东西复述一遍后,意味着你开始总结知识,就会更容易记住这个信息。

4、建立联系

自我解释的一个好处就是它帮助人们发现新的联系。发现联系能帮助我们提升记忆力。当我们向自己解释一个想法时,我们应该尝试寻找联系。像记忆法这种工具之所以会起作用,这就是原因之一。我们更容易记住彩虹的颜色,因为我们在颜色名称的首字母与首字母缩写词ROYGBIV之间建立了联系。

当我们发现某个专业领域的联系时,我们能够获得更丰富的理解。这有助于解释罗斯通过自我解释能够取得如此成功的原因。在学习计算机编程时,他通过不同的词汇或概念,尝试向自己解释各种想法。罗斯告诉我:“你正在做的很多自我解释就是在尝试建立连接。你对自己说,哦,我明白了,这样做之所以有效果,是因为这个引出那个,而那个又引出另外一个。”

自我解释应该成为当今员工的一项学习工具,因为经济发展对建立联系和采用新的见解和技巧提出了新的要求。美国电话电报公司的CEO兰德尔史蒂芬森认为,为了避免被淘汰,员工每周至少需要在线学习五小时。或许他们需要找一个隐蔽的场所,这样他们在大声与自己对话的时候才不会感到太尴尬。

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Brian Ross, a psychologist at the University of Illinois, signed up for a computer science course. He hasn’t had a class for a long time. His beard and bald head make him look conspicuous. He is ten years older than all the other students, which makes him very nervous.

But he has one advantage. Ross is a learning researcher. He is familiar with a very effective but often underestimated learning strategy – self explanation. This approach revolves around asking yourself some explanatory questions, such as “what does this mean? Why is it important?” It works to ask these questions out loud. A study shows that people who explain themselves learn nearly three times more than those who don’t.

In order to surpass his young classmates, Ross asked himself a lot of questions. He kept asking himself questions while reading the articles assigned by the teacher. After reading a sentence or paragraph, he would ask himself, “what have I just read? How do they connect with each other? Have I ever had this idea before?”

At the end of the course, Ross found that although he was relatively inexperienced and unfamiliar in computer, he could answer many questions that other students couldn’t answer and understand programming methods that other students didn’t understand. “Sometimes my advantage is that I focus on the bigger picture,” he told me

In the modern economy, no skill is more important than learning ability. Globally, learning is a high prediction of future benefits. Companies may pay for training or reimburse college courses, but they rarely teach skills.

Here’s how to use self explanation in self-learning:

< strong > 1. Talk to yourself < / strong >

Self talk doesn’t sound very good. It is often regarded as a symptom of mental illness. It’s not cool to do this in public. But talking to yourself is important for self explanation and is usually helpful for learning.

On the one hand, it can slow us down. When we do this more consciously, we can usually get more from an experience.

On the other hand, talking to ourselves can also help us think about what I think. When we are immersed in a conversation with ourselves, we usually ask ourselves such questions: “how do I know what I know? What puzzles me? Do I really know?” Whether we press the pause button while listening to a podcast or stop to think while reading a manual, we have improved our skills more effectively by thinking about what I think.

< strong > 2. Ask why < / strong >

Self explanation makes people have the impulse to express curiosity, otherwise this curiosity may never be found.

We ask ourselves, “why?” if we really know a topic, it’s not difficult to answer this question. For example, if I ask you a question about the town where you grew up, you can answer it quickly. Only when we don’t know, “why” is more difficult to answer. This is also a way to learn professional knowledge in a certain field.

To illustrate with examples, let’s look at the question: “Why are there waves?” Maybe some of us can find a basic answer: “waves are related to the wind. When the wind blows over the water, the water will ripple.”

But then there must be such a question: “why can the wind blow water?” Or “Why are there waves when there is no wind?” Let’s leave a suspense here. At least I did, and then I began to look for some answers, quickly browse the web and understand how energy moves on the water. Finally I learned more.

< strong > 3. Summary < / strong >

Summary is a simple way to explain ourselves, because expressing an idea in our own language can promote learning.

Maybe you have such an experience in your life. For example: think back when you read an article in a magazine and then explain the argument to your friend in detail. This is a form of summary. After doing so, you are more likely to learn from the article and get information.

Another example. Suppose you were writing an email recently describing how you felt after watching a documentary on Netflix. In this process, you enrich your ideas and devote yourself to a more direct meaning construction. In a word, you will have a richer understanding of the film and its theme.

You can do this in your own life. The next time someone – your boss, spouse, or friend – gives you a complex set of instructions, take the time to repeat them verbally. After repeating everything in this way, it means that you begin to summarize the knowledge and it will be easier to remember this information.

< strong > 4. Establish contact < / strong >

One advantage of self explanation is that it helps people find new connections. Finding connections can help us improve our memory. When we explain an idea to ourselves, we should try to find a connection. This is one of the reasons why tools like memory work. It is easier for us to remember the color of the rainbow because we have established a connection between the initial letter of the color name and the acronym roygbiv.

When we find a connection in a professional field, we can gain a richer understanding. This helps explain why Ross can achieve such success through self explanation. When learning computer programming, he tried to explain various ideas to himself through different words or concepts. Ross told me, “a lot of self explanation you’re doing is trying to establish a connection. You say to yourself, oh, I see, it works because this leads to that and that leads to another.”

自我解释应该成为当今员工的一项学习工具,因为经济发展对建立联系和采用新的见解和技巧提出了新的要求。美国电话电报公司的CEO兰德尔史蒂芬森认为,为了避免被淘汰,员工每周至少需要在线学习五小时。或许他们需要找一个隐蔽的场所,这样他们在大声与自己对话的时候才不会感到太尴尬。