Studying More EffectivelyAlthough we are continuously being bombarded with new theories, new ideas all the time from different sources, it is very easy to forget or get confused with what has been read or taught. The 'SQ3R' technique helps study in an appropriate level of detail, and remember information well. It makes reading both more efficient and more effective.
Francis Pleasant Robinson developed SQ3R, and published it in his 1946 book, "Effective Study." SQ3R is an acronym that stands for five steps that you should use when reading something that you want to remember. These five steps are:
Start by skimming through the material to pick up an overview of the text. Next, note down any questions that you may have about the subject. When you question the material, you engage your mind and prepare it for learning. Now read the document, one section at a time. Make a note of anything that you don't understand. While you're reading, take notes on important concepts, and to record your reactions to what you're reading. "Read actively" by underlining important passages or by using a highlighter pen to show key points. Once you've read the appropriate sections of the document, run through it in your mind several times. Identify the important points, and then work out how other information fits around them. Now, answer the questions from memory. Only turn back to the text if you're unable to answer a question this way.
Once you can recall the information, you can start to review it.
First, reread the document or your notes. This is especially important if you don't feel confident that you've understood all of the information.
Then discuss the material with someone else – this is a highly effective method of reviewing information. Explain what you have just learned as comprehensively as you can, and do your best to put the information into a context that's meaningful for your team, organization, or industry.
Finally, schedule regular reviews of the material to keep it fresh in your mind. Do this after a week, after a month, and after several months – this helps to embed the material into your long-term memory.