Taking the Testing Effect Beyond the College Freshman: Benefits for Lifelong Learning

Ashley M.D. Meyer, Jessica M. Logan, Amara, Mar 07, 2013
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I've been seeing research recently pointing to the utility of testing, such as this item (cited here). I don't see this so much as evidence in favour of testing per se but rather as an instance of the 'use-it or lose-it' phenomenon: tests are a way of using knowledge, and hence constitute a form of practice with that knowledge. Other kinds of practice - things as simple as using flash cards and as complex as applying mathematical formular to caclulate geode densities - will also produce this effect. That it is an effect, and that it persists even in later years, is significant. (Note that this journal article is a link that worked in my office; if it doesn't work at your home because of a subscription paywall, please accept my apologies and let me know).

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