In your own words


When students take notes on a laptop, they understand less than students who take notes by hand.

Handwriting is slow, which requires the notetaker to process the information before writing it down. There is an act of translation, which doesn’t occur when copying words verbatim.

It’s easy to feel like we understand things we’ve just interacted with. But how do we know?

It’s not enough to underline sentences in a textbook. To truly understand, we must be able to break information down and store it in our brain, outside of the context in which we learned it.

That is, we need to be able to put it in our own words.

“If you can’t understand it simply, you don’t know it well enough.”

— Albert Einstein

The greatest test of understanding is teaching. Can you explain a concept to a child?

Pop Quiz

Don’t scroll up.

What did you learn? What will you take away from this post?

(Try doing this after reading articles. You’ll notice how little we’re actually encoding.)