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Dr Mike J Smith
Kingston University

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Memory Techniques and Learning

Sun, 04 Sep 2011

I've just finished reading slew of books on memory techniques; Donald Clark put me on to Moonwalking with Einstein by Josh Foer. This is an incredibly readable book about the 1-year journey of a fresh journalist training for the US memory championships, however he spends considerable time looking at the history and science behind memory. This is what makes it readable and backs up the hyperbole with facts and, ultimately, his own performance in memory. If you want one book on memory (in addition to "Brain Rules" I introduced a while back) then this is it.

It's also worth mentioning two other books:

1. Ed Cooke's Remember, Remember: Learn the Stuff You Thought You Never Could. Ed has been in the top 10 memorists and trained Josh Foer (above). This is a series of 4 examples to memorise and work as a great adjunct to Josh's book providing real examples (e.g. memorise the 63 monarchs of England).

2. "Boost your memory" by Darren Bridger. 52 top tips on memory. All the salient info is there in bite-sized nuggets, but it trivialises it to a certain extent and doesn't highlight (amongst the other tips) the truly important stuff. However, after reading Foer it is a useful addition. It was free on Kindle for a number of weeks but is now back up to 8. Still worthwhile though.

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