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The question regarding the significance of the background and personal filter while learning seems to be essential and needs to be taken into account. The major purpose of the paper is to address the main arguments discussed by Johnstone in the article Chemistry Teaching—Science or Alchemy? and highlight the pivotal issues raised in the work.
Experiment with the Dates
The experiment presented by the author of the article proves that the working space is limited. We cannot extend it; however, we can improve the overall work. As the matter of fact, every person succeeded in it. Moreover, every child did it, and it is about reading. In the beginning, every letter comes as a new piece of information and only after certain effort, letters create the word, and it is only one piece of information. When I read the task and tried to perform it, I thought that everything was easy; and it was until a point when I started making mistakes.
The first three dates were very easy to transform into numbers and to rearrange. However, it worth stating that the fourth one was more difficult, and it is the point when I made the first mistake. Talking about the last date, I have to admit that I failed to rearrange numbers. This experiment shows that every person should put efforts to improve the capability of the working space. Our brain needs to be in constant progress in order to develop and not regress. Certain logical tasks and exercises are essential for the improvement of the abilities.
Model of Processing the Information
Figure two deals with the model of processing the information. The author suggests that all the events or instructions are analyzed according to the personal filter (background, experience), then the interpreted information comes to the working space where the information needs to be transformed and rearranged to be prepared for storage. After this phase, the information comes to the long-term memory where it can store or retrieve back to the working process.
The third figure indicates how the students performed the experiment. The students were given certain tasks that the majority of them performed correctly, however, with the increasing of the level of difficulty most of the students failed. The author explains it with the idea that every student has different kinds of filters that indicate the importance or insignificance of the information, indicate whether the material is boring or not. The filter can be an obstacle to learning. That is, the students failed the experiment. Moreover, the personal filter might be the reason for failing exams and bad academic performing.
Type of Notes
The second table deals with the description of the connection between the type of notes students take and success on the exam. First and foremost, the author focuses attention on the correlation between the amount of the material and learning. According to the author’s point of view, the more material student get, the less they will remember. I take notes accurate and complete. For the better understanding of the material, I usually read the notes after the lecture.
In conclusion, it should be pointed out that academic success is connected to the number of factors, namely, the filter, personal background, and experience. I developed five commandments how to improve learning:
- 1. Develop your learning abilities! Exercise every day.
- 2. Keep your notes systemized and in order.
- 3. Search new information and discuss it with your friends, groupmates.
- 4. Improve your working space.
- 5. Try to adjust the theory to practice.
Johnstone, A. H. “Chemistry Teaching – Science or Alchemy? 1996 Brasted Lecture.” Journal of Chemical Education 74.3 (1997): 262-68. Web.