The Science of Self-Learning | Peter Hollins

Summary of: The Science of Self-Learning: How to Teach Yourself Anything, Learn More in Less Time, and Direct Your Own Education
By: Peter Hollins


Welcome to the summary of ‘The Science of Self-Learning’ by Peter Hollins, a true guide to understanding the art of teaching yourself. Embark on a journey that will help you overcome obstacles in self-learning and unlock infinite potential. Discover the difference between traditional education and self-learning, and the many benefits that come from taking charge of your own education. Through this summary, you will explore the Learning Success Pyramid, the concept of intrinsic motivation, practical methodologies like the SQ3R method, and effective reading techniques. Be prepared to transform your approach to learning and expand your horizons.

Unlocking the Power of Self Learning

Education is often associated with accreditation, but the internet has made self-education more accessible than ever before. In this book, readers will learn how to become self-educators, or “autodidacts,” through discipline and strategy. Traditional learning can be psychologically restrictive, use fear as a motivator, limit creativity, promote close-mindedness, and hinder future education. On the other hand, self-learning offers infinite possibilities, sets you up for lifelong learning, allows different perspectives, develops self-discipline, and opens up unique opportunities. By taking readers through finding inspiration to learn, planning, developing positive habits, and driving their education, this book will help readers unlock the power of self-learning.

The Learning Success Pyramid

Educator Susan Kruger developed the Learning Success Pyramid with three critical “blocks” necessary to structure your learning journey: Confidence, self-management, and learning. Confidence and self-management come first, followed by learning. Intrinsic motivation, generated internally, is critical for self-learning and far more rewarding than externally motivated extrinsic motivation. Author and social philosopher Daniel Pink identified three factors comprising intrinsic motivation: autonomy, mastery, and purpose. Ultimately, inspiration provides more powerful motivation than compulsion. By orienting your mind toward the internal rewards and improvements you seek, your education becomes a gift you give yourself. To understand any subject, persevere with hard work, believe in your ability to learn, make plans on how to learn, and be patient with yourself. Learning something new takes time, but with the right mindset and approach, anyone can learn.

Mastering Self-Learning

Discover the SQ3R method to overcome overwhelming self-learning challenges. The method involves five simple but transformative processes: Survey, Question, Read, Recite, and Review. These processes help in challenging your mind to delve deeper and contextualize what you have learned, motivating a better understanding of relativity of concepts. While the method requires a high level of commitment and dedication, it becomes easier with practice, and the rewards are exceptional. You are assured of an improvement in your self-learning skills, enabling you to advance faster than others.

Speed Up Your Reading

Inefficient reading can take a long time to finish a book. However, improving reading speed by just 100 words per minute can reduce reading time by 25%. The author suggests four techniques to improve reading speed and retention. Firstly, stop subvocalizations which slow down reading and focus on simple recognition. Another technique is to train the eyes to take in more words. Readers can strategically skim by reading the first three words from the left margin, skipping meaningless words, and scanning for important words that carry the meaning of the sentence. Finally, reading requires full attention and focus, and it is necessary to eliminate distractions and take breaks. The author encourages readers to change their perspective on the material and mimic the joy of reading something they are interested in. By following these techniques, readers can become efficient and enjoy reading more.

Mastering Reading with Adler’s Four Levels

Mortimer Adler’s How to Read a Book introduces four levels that readers can use to approach any book based on its complexity and purpose. The elementary level focuses on basic reading skills like vocabulary, grammar, and alphabet. Inspectional level is for readers who want to get the gist of the book. Analytical level is for readers to interact with the book with the aim of being able to explain it to someone else. Syntopical level is for readers to compare and contrast different views on the same subject. Adler’s four levels allow readers to gradually approach a subject so that it becomes familiar.

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