How to learn and memorize new words

The VictorPrep Vocab Podcast is designed to help people improve their English vocabulary. This can be to improve your scores in a standardized test such as the GRE or SAT, or simply to improve your English skills for an academic or professional career. For some of us, learning words and improving our vocabulary is a fun activity in itself!

However, simply listening to the podcast passively is not the best method for memorizing new words. The human brain cannot effectively commit new information to long-term memory without taking some actions, this is called active learning.

To use the podcast effectively, and to ensure you use your time in the most efficient way possible, here is a list of tricks and tips for quick and easy learning and long term memorization of new words.

Tips and Tricks for Word Memorization using the VictorPrep Vocab Podcast

  1. Make examples. It’s extremely important to use the new words you learn by creating example sentences. You can make up these sentences in your head or write them down. This is a crucial step in the learning process because it’s not possible to write down an example sentence for a word you don’t understand.
  2. Make your examples funny, colorful, and rememberable. It’s easier to remember interesting, crazy, or funny images, than things than are boring, gray, or tedious. When you make up your example sentences, make them wild, weird, and colorful. Also, use people, pets, and events from your own life where appropriate to aid the memorization process.
  3. Test Yourself. After finishing an episode of the podcast, briefly test yourself by looking at the words and seeing if you can define them. Forcing your brain to recall the definitions is a key piece of the active learning process. When you make your brain work like this, you’re effectively telling it, “I care about this information, keep it safe!” and so your brain will take extra care to store this information in a safe place.
  4. Relax. People learn less well if they’re nervous, stressed, or anxious. Thus it’s very important to relax and enjoy the process. There’s no penalty for forgetting words and there’s no teacher who will be angry for bad behavior in class! Words and language are fun and creative topics so take it easy, make up funny examples, and don’t be harsh to yourself if you ever find it tough!
  5. Repitition. Repitition is one of the keys to success. It’s exceedingly rare for the brain to remember something permanently after only seeingĀ it one time. This is why I repeat word definitions multiple times in the podcast, and why I go over the previous episode’s words in each podcast. Make sure you use the test episodes, which allow you to test yourself easily, and repeat this process after a few weeks, to ensure your knowledge is solidified in the brain.
  6. Take your time. Don’t rush through the learning process! If you rush without doing the active learning and repitition, you will only have to come back later when you realize you have forgotten the words! Rushed learning isn’t effective and will often mean that knowledge is only in your short-term memory and will soon fade away. Take your time to make your examples and test yourself, enjoy the process and you’ll fine the words stick much more easily.
  7. Enjoy Yourself! Language is one of the things that makes humans human. Communication allows us to express ourselves, to be creative, to show love and kindness, to teach, and to inspire. By learning new words, you are giving yourself new tools and new ideas to touch other people and to impact the world. That’s inspiring to me, and I want others to be inspired too. Use the words you use in your day to day life and you’ll find you never forget them, and you’ll grow as a person!

Extra Credit:

Take one or more of the new words you learn from the Podcast, especially the ones you find the most interesting or fun, and teach them to a friend or family member! You know you truly understand something when you can teach it somebody else.

Thanks and good luck in your learning.


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