Aedge Podcast - Rarely Rational - Spacing Effect

Apr 25, 2024

Read, rest & repeat to recall

In this third episode of the Rarely Rational series about cognitive biases affecting memory and recall, Jyothi Sridhar, Madhavi Nadig, and Anagha explore the Spacing Effect.

  • Madhavi tests listeners’ recognition and recalls using some tunes

  • The memory test includes segments from the Airtel ringtone, Ed Sheeran’s track “Shape of You”, ad jingles from Titan watches and Intel Pentium processor, music from the movie “Kantara” and the Jingle Bells tune

  • Popular tunes become unforgettable earworms since we hear them many times and on different occasions

  • The Spacing Effect makes us remember things we’ve heard repeatedly and at spaced-out intervals - It improves retention and recall by helping us move information from short-term memory to long-term memory

  • A short study or practice session, followed by testing your knowledge, evaluating results, and adapting your next practice session yield better results than one long continuous period of study

  • Jyothi learnt French better using Duolingo than in college, since Duolingo uses the Spacing Effect, along with several ways to motivate learners to continue learning

  • Anagha believes notifications are good memory aids that spur action.

  • Madhavi sets multiple notifications per calendar event to remember due dates and plan around distractions and procrastination

  • Anagha had to practice her dance steps, but her dance partner learned them just by watching the music video repeatedly

  • “Work with our brains, not against them”

  • Cramfests are popular though ineffective

  • With a bit of discipline, learners can take advantage of the Spacing Effect and learn effectively by spending the same amount of time

  • MOOCs try to use the Spacing Effect, but learners’ lack of motivation or discipline results in very low completion rates

  • The German psychologist, Hermann Ebbinghaus, has created the - - ----------- Forgetting Curve based on his research about how people forget

  • Retention requires reinforcing newly learnt information before it is forgotten - Over several days, SmartStart reinforces concepts using nudges, exercises, polls, quizzes, student-led discussions, AMAs, and Q&A with expert coaches

  • The rising popularity of microlearning in corporate learning since learners can complete small lessons whenever they find time and revisit them as often as needed

  • We use a generous dose of humour and memes in our learning products to take advantage of the Humour Effect while spacing information out

  • In marketing, the Spacing Effect is at the core of brand-building campaigns - How companies design the 8 or so customer touch points needed for a sale, using multiple channels

  • Online platforms allow advertisers to retarget consumers a fixed number of times in a day and over multiple days based on heuristics

  • Most applications use design elements familiar to users to cater to their expectations which have been formed by using similar apps for a long time

  • For complex products, user onboarding can be made easier by introducing new features in bite-sized chunks over several days

  • Websites typically repeat their call-to-action (CTA) buttons even on the same page

  • Repeating the call to action is a good strategy for creating impactful presentations and courses - Distributed Practice is better than a marathon learning session

  • Instructional Designers deliver more impactful courses by splitting learning into short sessions focused on a small number of related topics, with repetition and reinforcement of the key ideas built into it

  • The awareness of the Spacing Effect may help us not fall for click-bait - Companies can schedule periodic reviews to reinforce OKRs and company values in employees’ minds

  • EdTech companies can support students by giving them flashcards

  • Since recalling information also reinforces it, online courses should include periodic tests in the learning phase as well

  • EdTech companies and marketers benefit from using a variety of messages and mediums to communicate ideas to their target audiences

  • Serial Positioning Effect: People’s tendency to remember items at the beginning and the end of lists

  • Even though it’s one of the most recognized brands in the world, Coca-Cola continues to spend $4 billion on advertising around the world.

This podcast is brought to you by Adeptic Creative Labs with support from the team at Clearly Blue Digital.

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