Trainers must train people to successfully apply new knowledge in any situation where they can be useful. Do all those who complete a course achieve this goal?
José Antonio Marina explains in depth in his books and papers, that memory is the basis of intelligence, and only starting from what is already in it we can incorporate new knowledge, so it is a limiting factor of the possibilities of each person. The real training comes to produce in few formations, and what is learned is lost with the passage of time.
Already in 1885 Hermann Ebbinghaus published in his treatise on memory that the day after a master class recalls less than 40% of its content and, a month later, not even 20%. The process of continuous training (permanent learning) became a succession of peaks with much knowledge acquired, and valleys with those few really consolidated that endure over time.
The advance of neuroscience allows us to know today the phenomenon of neuroplasticity: the human brain learns by generating neuronal connections.
Everything we learn is due to neurons that come together temporarily to transmit neurotransmitters to each other. But that union requires energy and after a while without being used, the connection releases and the energy is used to connect more useful concepts.
Under the slogan “Use it or lose it“, the memory erases in a few minutes what does not show a real utility hours later. If there is activity in the new connection in the hours after it is generated, the concept is interpreted as useful. In this way, the connection is “soldered” more after each opportunity, favoring the consolidation of the concept in memory.
The traditional training was designed aiming only at passing an evaluation test at the end of the course, without guaranteeing the subsequent scope.
Recent meta-analysis of multiple neuroscientific works have shown that the most common study techniques (re-reading, underlining, summarizing, …) do not serve to ensure the long-term durability of the concepts. It is necessary to exercise memory with very different active strategies, for which trainers can rely on new technologies. Small differences in training methodologies can lead to profoundly different changes in the student’s brain.
When a trainer becomes aware of his neuromodulatory ability to modify the electrochemical structure of his audience’s brain, he faces the challenge of improving his way of transmitting learning so that it is effective and can be transferred to practical uses.
It is not enough, then, to expose the student in contact with the information to be learned, but it is necessary to ensure that this exhibition has subsequent revisions that make it possible to exercise the circuits of the new competences. The new role of the trainer is to accompany the learning process with formats as active as possible, which optimize the understanding and retention of the contents.
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