Washington: Some people use mind pictures or songs to remember things, but now a study suggests that simply drawing pictures of what you need to remember is a strong and reliable strategy to enhance memory.
Lead author Jeffrey Wammes form the University of Waterloo said, “We pitted drawing against a number of other known encoding strategies, but drawing always came out on top.”
Wammes added that they believe that the benefit arises because drawing helps to create a more cohesive memory trace that better integrates visual, motor and semantic information.
The student participants were presented with a list of simple, easily drawn words, such as apple. The students were given 40 seconds to either draw the word, or write it out repeatedly. They were then given a filler task of classifying musical tones to facilitate the retention process. Finally, the researchers asked students to freely recall as many words as possible from the initial list in just 60 seconds.
“We discovered a significant recall advantage for words that were drawn as compared to those that were written,” said Wammes. “Participants often recalled more than twice as many drawn than written words. We labelled this benefit ‘the drawing effect,’ which refers to this distinct advantage of drawing words relative to writing them out.”
The study appears in the Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology. (ANI)