The Pros And Cons Of Self Testing

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Leonardo da Vinci once said, “Learning is the only thing the mind never exhausts, never fears, and never regrets.” To learn is to acquire, to gain, knowledge or skills, be it through study or by experience. For some, it is an interesting and fun process in life, for others, not so much. Thus, some may find it a bore or a chore and others may find it difficult when learning. However, if a student were to understand and master the difficulty of a particular skill or subject, the skill/subject would certainly gain some interest and confidence from the student when learning, from then onwards. With a little interest, learning can be easier and a lot more fun. In that sense, is that not a cycle? To learn, only to find it difficult, but when said…show more content…
It is generally accepted that testing encourages and gauges students’ learning, although most students would agree that education would be a little bit more enjoyable if they took fewer tests, given that the tests contain a lot of marks at stake (Dunlosky et al., 2013). Hence, the idea of self-testing as a form of practice testing is a reasonable idea. When students do self-testing, they test their memory, what they have learned, what have they revised; anything they can recall from memory. Through this, they can gauge their own performance and where they stand in terms of comprehension and understanding, much like how teachers do when testing students. Hartwig and Dunlosky (2012) believe that “self-testing by recalling the target information boosts performance on subsequent recall and multiple-choice tests of the target information, and it also boosts performance on tests of comprehension” (p. 131). Self-testing can be done in many different kind of manners, including solving questions and doing exercises at the end of each studying or revising session, using actual or virtual flashcards to stimulate memory or even rewriting notes on subjects without referring to references other than the students’ own brain. However, no matter the effectiveness of self-testing, like any other learning technique, this method can prove to be ineffective if used wrongly. The objective of this method is to encourage the…show more content…
Nonetheless, students should identify which few methods enhance their memory and understanding best when learning, as different students have different learning needs. Likewise, students, who are usually required to recall learning materials, are recommended to view future new materials with strong enthusiasm and determination (Shuilleabhain, 2014), as it is an approach to motivate students. However, students should take care not to practice learning techniques they are not familiar with, especially when nearing the exams; as students who, Lan (cited in Bednall and Kehoe, 2011, pp. 205-226) believes, “engage in unfamiliar strategies may induce a high working memory load, thereby diminishing the effectiveness of their study efforts.” Also, both teachers and parents alike should take the practical and relevant steps in ensuring that their students/children are well schooled in the manner of implementing effective learning techniques in their academic life. Additionally, students should understand that no matter how effective a learning technique is, it does not guarantee their success in exams or in the long term. No learning technique is flawless, and each can be used ineffectively; but with proper skills to apply them, these techniques can be of
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