Industry Insights
neuroscience learning tips
LINKEDIN
November 23, 2019 |
:::

Five Tips for Optimizing Your Brain

Artificial Intelligence is here. We can outsmart the robots if we optimize our human brains.

By Jenny McKeel
:::

As technological change accelerates, organizations prepare for increased AI and machine learning in the workplace. We can expect faster innovation cycles and fluctuating business circumstances that demand mastery of new knowledge. However professionals who embrace a strategy for learning will keep pace with organizational advancement.

Associate Professor Marcia Ruben, PhD, PCC, a leading innovator in applied neuroscience and leadership, is among GGU faculty members who are bringing the neuroscience of learning into the classroom and training others in cutting-edge neuroscience learning techniques. Here are five tips for super-charging how you learn in the workplace, based on work done by Josh Davis, Maite Balda. David Rock, Paul McGinnis, and Lila Davachi published in volume five of the 2014 NeuroLeadership Journal.

Pay Attention

Neuroscientists have discovered that activation of a brain region called the hippocampus plays a significant role in information recall. In order for the hippocampus to sufficiently activate, we must give our undivided attention to the task at hand. However, studies have long demonstrated that we can only pay attention for 20 minutes at a time, before losing ability to retain information. Take a break after 20 minutes or shift your focus to a different task to allow your circuits to refresh. If you  have to focus for long periods, allow your mind to drift and when you return to the task, consider what’s new about your work to help your brain revive.

Don’t Multitask

Avoid multitasking—the enemy of learning—like the plague. Studies show that when people multitask they are not doing more than one task at a time, but rapidly switching between two actions and engaging only one brain region at a time. Participants attempting to multitask performed worse on tasks than those who focused on just one task. The poor performance of the multitaskers was due to the effort involved in constantly refocusing. Be thorough and consistent about limiting multitasking and you will achieve better results.

Generate Your Own Ideas

Create and share connections to new ideas and your memory will be bolstered. Studies show that learning improves when we engage brain regions involved with generating new knowledge and social interaction, including the medial prefontal cortex (MPFC), a region involved in thinking about identity and the self. You can facilitate learning by applying what you have learned, training others on new approaches, making decisions based on new information, presenting ideas to a group, and reflecting on how new ideas relate to yourself and your projects.

Create Positive Emotion

Some positive emotion enhances learning and too much negative emotion can sabotage it and reduce creativity and innovation. Studies show a strong correlation between the vividness of a memory and the emotionality of the learning process. If you’re trying to tamp down negative emotions while learning, try acknowledging your feelings to clear away distractions. Another effective tactic is called reappraisal. If you’re feeling frustrated with learning a task, focus on the positives such as what you have learned so far and the value this new knowledge will bring. Not only will this help you move forward with a positive outlook, it will improve your ability to remember new information.

Space Out Learning

Spacing out learning over an extended time is the single most important practice for enhancing memory—especially at work where long-term memory matters. It’s also counterintuitive. Multiple studies show that students perform better when they learn new material over several sessions. One of the most profound benefits of spacing is that it allows for sleep, which provides optimal conditions for learning. When training yourself or others on new knowledge, return to material multiple times and space out training sessions to maximize return on your investment.

Source:

Davis, J., Balda, M., Rock, D., McGinnis, P., & Davachi, L. (2014). The science of making learning stick: An update to the AGES model. NeuroLeadership Journal, 5(August 2014), 1-16.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments Box SVG iconsUsed for the like, share, comment, and reaction icons

"My biggest accomplishment was pushing through my final year at GGU during the pandemic, with four kids under the age of 5 while working a full-time job from home, facilitating distance learning for my kids and graduating with a 4.0 GPA."

LJ Mizzi, winner of the 2020 Outstanding Student Award in the School of Undergraduate Studies, shares how she earned her degree in the face of challenges that sometimes made her want to give up. In the process she gained the knowledge, skills, and confidence she needed to advance her marketing career.
Read more: ow.ly/odI450Dlfyo
... See MoreSee Less

My biggest accomplishment was pushing through my final year at GGU during the pandemic, with four kids under the age of 5 while working a full-time job from home, facilitating distance learning for my kids and graduating with a 4.0 GPA.  

LJ Mizzi, winner of the 2020 Outstanding Student Award in the School of Undergraduate Studies, shares how she earned her degree in the face of challenges that sometimes made her want to give up. In the process she gained the knowledge, skills, and confidence she needed to advance her marketing career.
Read more: http://ow.ly/odI450Dlfyo

Congratulations to the class of 2021! Your perseverance and dedication brought you here, despite an incredibly difficult past year, and we are so proud of you. If you haven’t viewed the virtual Commencement ceremony, you can access it here: ggu.edu/commencement
🎓 🎉 #ggugrad2021
... See MoreSee Less

Congratulations to the class of 2021! Your perseverance and dedication brought you here, despite an incredibly difficult past year, and we are so proud of you. If you haven’t viewed the virtual Commencement ceremony, you can access it here: ggu.edu/commencement
🎓  🎉   #ggugrad2021

GGU's virtual commencement ceremony 2021 is TODAY! We can't wait to celebrate with you! View this afternoon’s commencement here:
youtu.be/WFhcRlW4LHA

Please tag us on Instagram in your celebration posts @ggusocial, @ggulaw wearing your cap and gown, using the AR photo filter provided by StageClip, or just dressed in whatever you choose to celebrate. 🎓 🎉 🎊 #GGUgrad202
... See MoreSee Less

GGUs virtual commencement ceremony 2021 is TODAY! We cant wait to celebrate with you! View this afternoon’s commencement here: 
https://youtu.be/WFhcRlW4LHA

Please tag us on Instagram in your celebration posts @ggusocial, @ggulaw wearing your cap and gown, using the AR photo filter provided by StageClip, or just dressed in whatever you choose to celebrate. 🎓  🎉  🎊  #GGUgrad202
Load more