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BarbaraOakley_OlavSchewe: Learn Like a Pro: Science-Based Tools to Become Better at Anything

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Do you spend too much time learning, with disappointing results? Do you put off studying because it’s boring and you’re easily distracted? This course is for you! In Learn Like a Pro , beloved teacher of learning Dr. Barbara Oakley, and learning coach extraordinaire Olav Schewe lay out techniques that can help you master any material. Based on easy-to-understand but cutting-edge neuroscientific research, Learn Like a Pro is like no other course on learning—join us today!

2 weeks
1–2 hours per week
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Starts Dec 8

About this course

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Do you spend too much time learning with disappointing results? Do you find it difficult to remember what you read? Do you put off studying because it’s boring and you’re easily distracted? This course is for you!

Dr. Barbara Oakley—instructor of some of the most popular online courses of all time—and her co-instructor Olav Schewe, educational coach extraordinaire, have struggled in the past with their learning. But they’ve found ways to succeed—Barb has gone from a math-phobic failure in high school to become an engineering professor, and Olav has gone from a mediocre, muddling student to become a standout in his graduate studies at Oxford. In Learn Like a Pro , Olav and Barb lay out techniques based on easy-to-understand but cutting-edge neuroscientific research that can also help you master any material.

Learn Like a Pro is like no other course on learning—it weaves late-breaking insights from neuroscience into Barb and Olav’s previous research and teaching to show unexpected, yet practical, new approaches. You’ll learn why note-taking isn’t always beneficial and why speed-reading techniques don’t work (they speed up only your eyes, not your brain—but there is something better you can do instead). You’ll also learn why the best strategies for learning a new language as an adult are inevitably different from the approaches you used as a child. And guess what? The same techniques you might use to boogie-down with dance or sink a basketball share can, with clever retooling, also help you gradually become an expert coder or master at chess.

Think you aren’t so smart? Learn why your slower way of learning can help you see the faulty assumptions and discover deeper truths that even geniuses can miss. In fact, you’ll learn how applying useful learning techniques to your slow-learning approach can help you to sometimes perform better than mental superstars. Are you already a great learner? Learn Like a Pro will give you useful tools to become even more powerful in your learning. (Pro tip—what you’ve previously been taught about how to learn successfully is often the opposite of what neuroscience tells us about how to learn most successfully.) This inspirational course will also teach you how to boost your motivation and creatively handle frustration—no matter what you’re learning. You’ll find new pathways to triumph, and you’ll have a lot of fun while you’re at it. Join us at Learn Like a Pro and boost your learning success today!

At a glance

  • Language: English
  • Video Transcript: English
  • Associated skills: Teaching, Research, Speed Reading, Optometry

What you'll learn

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In Learn Like a Pro , you’ll learn not only the most effective techniques to help your learning but also why those techniques are effective. Here’s a quick overview of key topics we’ll cover:

  • How knowledge is stored in long-term memory and which techniques you can use to make sure you do not easily forget what you have just learned
  • How the brain alternates between two different modes for learning and thinking and how you can take advantage of this to improve your creativity and problem-solving skills
  • How to beat procrastination and distractions to focus better during learning
  • The critical role of working memory in learning and how to optimize it
  • The difference between declarative and procedural knowledge and how to learn each type of knowledge more effectively
  • How to motivate yourself to learn better by increasing the brain's production of dopamine
  • Why speed reading doesn't work for learning and what you should do instead to read more effectively
  • How metacognition improves your learning and a simple 3-step model to continuously improve the way you learn

Frequently Asked Questions

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Who is this course for?
All learners.

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