How would you effectively apply memory techniques to academia?

How would you effectively apply memory techniques to academia?

I’m about to go back to university to start studying psychology in a couple of weeks, and I’m not too sure the most effective way to apply memonic techniques to concepts and psychological studies etc rather than lists of things.

What I’ve done so far is just learn pegs (A-Z, 1-100, using the shaper system which I’ve found on AOM) and start compiling a list of possible memory palaces.

Does anybody have any experience with using memory techniques for academia or tips?


Psychology is a pretty simple science. It wiil be enough to create a key image for each idea and link them together.

This works worse for mathematic, there I advise Scott Young’s holistic learning.


I consider biology, chemistry, history, psychology, anything medicine, IT (certifications, rules, standards) not necessarily Software Engineering, Mathematics and Physics as a career or in depth could benefit a lot from the use of mnemonics and visualization.

For sake of preserving list of data elements and facts, strategies and algorithms of evaluation and calculation.

Within psychology, it’s almost straight forward the use of at least memory palaces for the storage of vast amounts of principles, theories of different therapies.

Tips on studying for university:

  1. Organize the information. Consider preparing the sources more than your memory palaces and pegs image lists. Slice what you need, and focus on that. Techniques: I’d prefer to only use a pure imagery, link system and the story method for the process of encoding and creating associations between images and the target information. Using then memory palaces to hold, properly ordered or not, these images.
  2. If you have to learn definitions, concepts, algorithms (how to), and you have the information properly layout, it’s a matter of taking action. In 15 minutes you could speed memorize for exams, but if you really want to know, then simply make the effort of not only memorizing your understanding of the concepts, but consider recalling so you know you know and what exactly you know you know.
  3. NEVER EVER memorize verbatim. Memorize only your understanding… even if they result in the same words, consider rephrasing them.
  4. I would advice you to build up your images. Optional, maybe too deep. Speeding up recall of many concepts. For instance, a concept that, could be one paragraph long to express or define an idea, you can start by forming various images that amount to the concept, but once you reach this point, nothing stop you from taking all these images and mingle them into a single cohesive one. Further, you can even take various cohesive images and combined them.
  5. You don’t need to train. For knowledge acquisition, you just need to memorize.
  6. Set goals, time intervals, deadlines. Try and avoid making memorization more tedious that it could be or stressful. Beat procrastination. Be smart with your images, don’t try on having the perfect fitting image with highest vividness… you don’t need that.

It’s simple, it’s easy, it takes as much time as comfortable you are with memorizing.

Memorizing could be learning, if what you memorize is such that you learn. If about a subject, you memorize the what, why and how, will someone dare say you don’t know, when and then, show off.


Wow, thank you so much for those tips! :smiley: I can see them saving me a lot of time already.

Regarding the technique you mention (of using pure imagery, link system and story method), I’m not too clear on this …apologies if this is an obvious question.

Would an example of applying the technique you mention be like follows?

( :point_down: in the below example, which I saw from this thread, by user Kosmopolitan)

Example text to learn:
> Social Learning Theory, formed by Bandura in 1977, argues that learning is not purely behavioral, but it is a cognitive process in a social context. He posits that people can learn through vicarious reinforcement, the observation of a behavior and its consequences, and involves modelling, the observation, extraction of information from those observations, and decision-making about the performance of those behaviors. Thus, learning can occur without an observable change in behavior, and reinforcement is not entirely responsible for learning. The four conditions required for learning are: attention; retention; reproduction; and motivation. These conditions can further be influenced by factors such as the relevance of the behavior and traits of the model.

  1. read it intensely. Do not think “oh i’ll just make a journey for this so I don’t have to understand/remember”. Read it while you convince yourself; this is the last time I’ll ever be allowed to look at this text, ever.
  2. now boil the text down to the most essential elements. e.i.:

-learn by observation
-attention, retention, reproduction, motivation
-other factors

In this way you have condensed 6-7 lines of text to 6 points.

  1. Make associations to each item on the list: SLT is a BLT sandwich with salmon instead of bacon. Bandura is a professor who’s the lead singer in a band. 77 is GG, gandalf the grey in my system or the 7 dwarves and their twins, if you don’t have system. ‘Learn by observation’ is a mom watching the cooking channel. ‘Attention’ is a tent. It collapses so you have to re-tent (retention), inside the tent are people having sex (reproduction) while being motivated by the host from fear factor.

Thanks again!


Just reading Scott Young’s holistic learning while at work atm, looks really awesome so far. Thanks Andrey for the recommendation :smiley:

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I learned a lot from this book too. Good luck in your development!

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