Improving Memory Skills in College


  1. Make a commitment to remember: You must be motivated to succeed and have an intention to remember or else learning can’t take place.


  1. Organize the information you want to learn: When taking notes you can cluster information in meaningful groups or categorize items by importance. Don’t rely on remembering information you’ve heard if you don’t write it down.


  1. Recite information aloud to help transfer from short-term to long-term memory: Recitation works because it actively involves not only your mind, but also your body as it strengthens the neural trace in your brain.


  1. Create mnemonic devices to remember information: This is a memory aid when you assign words, phrases, and/or rhymes to remember difficult principles or facts. This is how elementary children remember the names of the five great lakes (HOMES=Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, Superior). Mnemonics serve us for the rest of our lives when we want to recall information such as how many days there are in a month.


  1. Visualize what you want to remember by creating a story or situation around it: Using familiar stories or situations allows you to remember things better.

[1] by Flora Brown, 2000.