How practice tests improve memory.
ScienceDaily (Oct. 15, 2010) — Although most people assume that tests are a way to evaluate learning, a wealth of research has shown that testing can actually improve learning, according to two researchers from Kent State University. Dr. Katherine Rawson, associate professor in Kent State’s Department of Psychology, and former Kent State graduate student Mary Pyc publish their research findings in the Oct. 15, 2010, issue of the journal Science.
“Taking practice tests — particularly ones that involve attempting to recall something from memory — can drastically increase the likelihood that you’ll be able to remember that information again later,” Rawson said. “Given that hundreds of experiments have been conducted to establish the effects of testing on learning, it’s surprising that we know very little about why testing improves memory.”