Education is in dire need of transformation. For years, parents, students, educators, and politicians have asked, “Why is our education system ineffective?” Instead, I urge you to ask a different question: “Why do we still use a system that has been shown to be ineffective?”
Simultaneously, for more than 100 years, cognitive scientists have established robust teaching strategies that dramatically improve learning. One of the most powerful evidence-based tools is retrieval practice. When teachers emphasize pulling information “out” from students’ minds (e.g., asking students to retrieve information on a quiz), long-term learning is dramatically improved. On the other hand, when teachers emphasize getting information “in” to students’ minds (e.g., lecturing or rereading textbook chapters), learning fades rapidly. Recent advances in retrieval practice research confirm that this powerful strategy improves long-term learning in authentic educational settings, including K-12 classrooms, undergraduate courses, and medical education programs.
RetrievalPractice.org is a growing online “hub” of empirical findings, practical tips, and specific tools and guides for implementing retrieval practice in classrooms. With these resources, educators in K-12 and higher education can harness the power of retrieval practice to transform and dramatically improve learning.
For more information about this resource, and to download a free guide about retrieval practice, please visit www.retrievalpractice.org.