Monthly Archives: April 2011

How to Improve Your Long-Term Memory: The Importance of Timing and Frequency

by Kevin Wong

Technique Trumps Innate Ability

For those of you who may think, “Oh, I have a terrible memory.  I could never retain all the stuff I need to remember for school”, think again.  Memory is far more dependent on technique and habit than innate ability.

In 2003, Nature analyzed the cognitive abilities of eight people who finished near the top of the World Memory Championships and found that their natural memory abilities and brain anatomies were NO DIFFERENT from those of the common person.

A typical World Memory Championship competitor can easily memorize and recite, in order, an entire deck of playing cards in less than 2 minutes, and an ordered list of over 1000 random numbers in an hour. These memory athletes, using their very average memories, simply trained themselves to use powerful techniques that take advantage of the way the human brain encodes and stores information to accomplish impressive feats of memory.

Believe it or not, if you had the discipline to train your mind to commit information to memory in a new way, you too could accomplish extraordinary feats of memory as well.

[Continue reading to learn techniques you can use to improve retention]
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Princeton Tutoring Essay Competition

Princeton Tutoring is sponsoring our first annual essay competition! (For additional competition details and rules, please visit

The underlying purpose of this year’s topics is to foster student self-awareness. Additionally, thinking about these types of questions will prepare students for the types of prompts they might encounter on their college applications.

  • High School Topic – Do you believe there are inherent conflicts between achieving both success and happiness?
  • Middle School Topic – Interview your family members and discover something about your family history that you might not have known before. Write about the significance of what you learned and what it means to you.

[Continue reading for additional thoughts on these topics] Continue reading