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The impact taking quizzes regularly has on memory retention

By Meredith Price, FlexiQuiz.
6 minute read.

Person thinking when taking an online quiz
Do you benefit from taking exams or quizzes regularly? The simple answer is yes; taking regular simple tests can help your memory in several ways , as I will demonstrate in this blog.

Keeping our minds sharp.

The mind is just as important as the physical body, and keeping our memories sharp is just as important as getting in that early morning run to burn calories.

Like the great thinker, John Henry Cardinal Newman said, "the health of the body and mind is a great blessing if we can bear it."

For again as another great mind of the 1800's, Anatole France said, "an education which does not cultivate the will is an education that depraves the mind."

Memory games

I remember when I was little, my family and I would go on road-trips together and play car games, like "I Spy" or "Shopping Cart." Yes, my parents played the games to keep us busy, although it also helped build my memory using engaging and straightforward memory recall techniques.

My parents were doing me a favor that I didn't necessarily appreciate till I was older. Even when I was in school and college, and I was struggling to remember things, the music mnemonic technique would help me recall information.

Advertisers also use music mnemonics to encourage us to remember their products with adverts containing lyrics and jingles. By repeating the adverts, we (the shoppers) start to learn and memorize the tune associated with their product. After all, how many people don't think of Cadbury's every time they hear the Phil Collins song "In the Air Tonight"?

Playing memory games and interactive quizzes regularly means that you're treating your mind like a muscle. The more you practice using your memory, the stronger it becomes.

Not all memories are the same

The terms that one generally needs to remember (memory joke) is that the brain stores memory in three separate areas that function in different ways:

  • Short-term
  • Long-term
  • Photographic or working

Short-term memory

Short term memory is a temporary storage solution for the information required to complete complex cognitive tasks like learning, reasoning, and comprehension.

You can improve your short-term memory by eating healthy, exercising, getting more sleep, and keeping your mind active.

Long-term memory

Your long term memory is responsible for the following:

  • Knowing how to do things things like walking, dancing, and riding a bike.
  • Knowledge such as the meaning of words and phrases.
  • Remembering events that have happened in our lives like passing your exams.

Your long-term memory allows you the ability to feel and know who the most important people are in your life.

Photographic memory

Photographic or the working memory is a place where images are stored wither between the short-term or long-term memories. If you have a photographic memory in earnest, a person can recall the vision they need to, just as clearly as a photograph.

How quizzes can help build and retain your memory

Repeated testing

Repeated testing with quizzes and exams improves the cognitive process that can amplify long-term memory retention and retrieval. It doesn't just measure knowledge, but i challenges it. If you test yourself more regularly, you are going to learn in greater detail than before. Memories will become encoded in your mind for a more extended period. You will have more access to the information and become more mature as a thinker, by making reliable connections over time and across different topics.

The repetition on the same subject is also known as the "testing effect."

People have known about the benefits of the "testing effect" for centuries. The psychologist William James, in 350 BCE, Aristotle wrote that "exercise in repeatedly recalling a thing strengthens the memory."

Tests improve your memory

When someone takes a test, they are asked to retrieve and produce previously learned information. Taking tests regularly also increases the overall effectiveness of how we choose to access and organize the tested information in our minds.

Taking either a short answer or a multiple-choice practice quiz also enhances memory on a later test, even when the second test is in a different format to the first quiz.

These results generalize to actual classroom settings. People who take periodic tests on material remember the information better on later exams. The enhancements is even more significant for a short answer than multiple-choice tests.

Quizzes give us confidence

Tests provide us with the opportunity to gain more confidence in our understanding of a topic by understanding what information we know and what we still need to learn. By using digital learning environments like an online quiz maker platform respondents can get instant feedback and results.

Making errors during a test enhances our memory for the correct answers.

The well-renowned Neuroscientist Susan Greenfield says that children in this day and age should be taught to join up the dots rather than just recall them.

She asks: "What is more important? Remembering the date of a battle, or understanding why the battle is important? We mustn't confuse those quick memory tricks with understanding. If you understand something, you don't have to try to understand it - it's just there."

In conclusion

Quizzes, tests, or exams measure performance; however, there is also value in using them regularly to help build and maintain our minds.

If you are a #testmaker and need to create the optimal learning experience for students or employees, utilize multiple types. A quiz taker's memory and retention of information will improve by repeating the subject in various ways using different kinds of questions.

You can quickly and easily build almost any type of quiz or test with FlexiQuiz to help build your learners knowledge and memory.

These are some of the key quiz maker features that can help you create an online quiz:

Randomize questions for people taking a similar test on a regular test.

A choice of 8 question types including fill-in-the-blanks, matching text, and multiple choice.

Grade based redirects.

Answer feedback can be shown during quiz or displayed on a PDF on the results page.