PEMDAS—An Unforgettable Acronym
by Paige Faber, ACDC Peer Advisor
Remember in seventh grade when you were discussing the order of operations in math class and the teacher told you the catchy acronym, “PEMDAS” (parenthesis, exponents, multiplication, division, addition, subtraction) to help you remember? Memorable acronyms aren’t the only way to memorize concepts. Here are a few ways to help you learn your coursework.
Make Flashcards or a Quizlet
Writing information down helps you to remember it, so make some flashcards! Flashcards are a simple and quick way to test your knowledge of a topic. The digital equivalent to flashcards would be Quizlet. Additionally, on Quizlet you are able to not only have flashcards, but also tests and memorization games. You can set up a Quizlet account at this website.
Make Acronyms or Phrases
If you are a person who is creative with their words, try making an acronym out of the first letters of your important concepts, like PEMDAS in math (Parentheses, Exponents, Multiplication, Division, Addition, Subtraction). If an acronym doesn’t work for you, try making up a phrase, like the four P’s of Marketing (Product, Pricing, Placement, Promotion).
Put it to a Tune
Nothing gets engrained in people’s heads more than a catchy jingle or song. To help you memorize, put your study topic to the tune of your favorite song. Making a parody for the entire song might be too much for you to remember (unless you’re Miley Stewart in Hannah Montana), so try to just do the chorus of the song. This memorization tactic is convenient because it can be practiced from anywhere at anytime.
The kinesthetic learners in the world might memorize coursework better if they pair a piece of information with a physical motion. This tactic engages the mind and the body, which allows for two different ways to remember. Examples of motions might just be a simple hand gesture or an arm movement.
Having a partner or study group quiz you on your memorization along with these techniques can also help you to learn the material.
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