We all experience loss of concentration, no
matter how interesting the subject. The key is to be able to minimize
the problem, or remove or avoid the obvious contributory factors. The
following will go a long way towards reducing concentration loss:
Understanding what you want to
get from the learning is critical in helping you to focus. Once you
have considered WHY you are taking the
time and trouble to acquire the knowledge/skill you will need to draw
up a list of questions regarding what exactly you want to know. This
helps your concentration because you are focusing to learn the answers
to your prepared questions. The link button below will take you to a
section of this site where you will be able to assess your learning
This relates to how you like to find the information, process
that information, feel and behave in learning situations. For example,
some people like to get the 'big picture' first and then build towards
the detail, while others like to begin with the examples and details
and work through to the overall picture. Some like theory before practice,
whilst others don't. There are a number of ways for charting your learning
style and this link will take you through this activity.
Here are some typical
excuses for not being able to concentrate.
Distractions (noise, interruptions,etc)
Not having the proper materials
Worries, concerns, commitments
or other 'baggage'.
Boring teacher / Book /
CD ROM / Web Site (!) etc.
Add your own favourite
Most of these problems can be
eliminated by planning, time-management and taking control of your
with your study group to suggest ways of resolving these problems.
Prepare a list of possible solutions and select someone to report
back to the class
Be Prepared: Think or
read about the subject in advance and have some questions ready on what
you would like to know. In this way you will focus to see if your questions
are going to be answered. Have all necessary tools and materials to
Keep an open mind: Put
any preconceived notions on hold until you have received the new knowledge
and then address your questions and/or arguments for clarification before
forming judgements or analysing the content.
Develop Effective Listening
Skills: Here's How:
Use mind-mapping or similar
method for taking notes: Here's
Develop Effective Study Skills.
Take frequent breaks: No
matter how interesting the subject or how interested we are in learning
about it, our minds cannot stay focussed on any one topic for long.
How long depends on the individual, but the recommended duration is
40-45 minutes per session before relaxing and doing something different
for a time.
Choose a Time when
you feel most rested and relaxed. Are you a night owl or a morning lark?
Adjust your study patterns to suit your personal preferences. When you
have no choice about the time you learn, then make sure you go over
the difficult concepts again when you are feeling alert.
What works for you? Work with your study group to make a list of what
helps you to concentrate.
We hope you
found this useful information to help you to improve your learning.
The site has been developed by G.Kelly as part of an integrated
approach to using ICT to help learners in learning how to learn.
The work will form part of a thesis for an MSc. Degree in I.T. in
Education at T.C.D.