Holistic Learning – How to Study Better

Like anyone I’m interested in how I can “optimize” my time learning about new concepts in web development, programming languages, etc. Especially, since graduating, where the “traditional” studying is no longer part of my daily routine, I started to wonder what could help me be more “efficient” when learning about new things…that’s when I read about holistic learning.

About Holistic Learning

Holistic Learning - How to Study BetterHolistic learning is a process for learning more effectively. The concept for holistic learning came out of several small articles Scott H Young wrote beginning with a popular entry entitled, “How to Ace Your Finals Without Studying.” The main idea Scott presented was that some people effortlessly learn new concepts and material while others struggle. Scott believes that the difference between these factors is mostly due to a process called holistic learning.

As many people who read the initial articles on holistic learning commented, you may notice that your own learning style closely reflects holistic learning. Holistic learning isn’t a new technique or revolutionary idea. It is simply a way of explaining how smart people think! 

Scott also wrote a free ebook about Holistic Leanring which you can get from his website. If you don’t have time to read the book, here is a quick summary of what it’s about:

  • Holistic learning is the opposite of rote memorization. Instead of learning through force, your goal is to create webs of information that link together.
  • Your goal when learning anything is to create a construct or an underlying understanding.
  • Constructs are formed from models, chunks of understanding that aren’t completely accurate but can be used to solve problems.
  • You create webs of information, constructs and models by visceralizing, metaphor and exploring.
  • Holistic learning works with highly conceptual information where there is an underlying system. It doesn’t work well with arbitrary information or skills.

If you have experiences with holistic learning or other techniques, please feel free to share your experiences in the comments.

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