How We Learn: Facts Aren’t Important


We have a difficult time remembering facts and details, they’re just not important to human memory, yet most of our courses are laden with facts.

According Dr Roger Schank, cognitive psychologist, learning scientist, in his report What We Learn When We Learn By Doing, facts can only be acquired in a useful way if sought out by the learner to satisfy curiosity, when the learner wants to know them. “The right time was when I wanted to know them, a time that could only have been determined by me and not a teacher.” 

Dan Pink, author of A Whole New Mind says, that with facts, information, and data so easily accessed now, “what begins to matter more [than mere data] is the ability to place these facts in context and to deliver them with emotional impact.

Thus, if remembering facts and details is important, place them in context, deliver them with emotional impact, and get them to the learner when they want to know them. Context – Emotion – Timing


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