Memory and Learning

The better something is learned the better it is remembered. The so-called #absentminded# professor forgets many little things, especially those he considers unimportant. He does not forget the things he regards as important and to which he has paid close attention. It is sometimes said that there are no good or bad memories, only good or bad learnings. If a politician or salesman wants to have a good memory for names, he learns them well initially. To do this, he uses certain techniques, such as listening carefully when he is introduced and intentionally using the person's name several times in the conversation that follows the introduction.

Therefore, the factors that help learning also help memory. For example, interest helps both processes. Thus a boy who usually finds it hard to remember numbers will learn his girl friend's telephone number easily and will probably have no difficulty in remembering it.

According to popular opinion, persons with high intelligence have better memories than less intelligent people. In an important sense, research shows this statement to be incorrect. If both the more intelligent person and the less intelligent one have learned something to the same degree of proficiency, their memory of it will be about the same. Less intelligent persons may have to try harder or longer than more intelligent ones to reach the same degree of proficiency. However, once the learning has been achieved, they are equally capable when asked to recall what they learned.

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