Coming to Terms with the Keyword Method in Introductory Psychology: A "Neuromnemonic" Example

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An introductory psychology course presents extensive new terminology to beginning students—a lexicon that may prove difficult to master. A useful technique in this regard is the mnemonic keyword method. However, because textbook examples often focus on the acquisition of foreign vocabulary, students and instructors may not see the relevance of the keyword method for the learning of terminology in psychology. To illustrate this connection, we provide a set of "neuromnemonic" material that we developed for terminology relaxed to the central nervous system. Furthermore, we describe a simple experiment in which we compared 2 versions of our keyword approach to a repetition condition. The 2 mnemonic approaches produced advantages on an immediate definition-memory test as well as on a task that required application of the material learned. These findings provide additional evidence that mnemonic strategies facilitate more than just rote memorization of facts.

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Carney, Russell N., and Joel R. Levin. "Coming to terms with the keyword method in introductory psychology: A “neuromnemonic” example." Teaching of Psychology 25, no. 2 (1998): 132-134.

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