Book: Make it Stick

@Chad_Maxa pointed out the book Make it Stick to me a while back, and I read it this past week. I’m really impressed with the book.

One impression it’s had on me is strengthening a belief in interleaving content as a critical component of learning. The authors argue that much of what happens in learning is massed practice—the repetition of concepts to build strength—but that research shows that massed practice leads to an illusion of learning that quickly breaks down when the studied concept is meshed with other concepts. They argue that interleaving concepts is critical to develop skills of discrimination that lead to mastery. Interleaving feels less productive and it’s slower, but the end result is much stronger.

Another impression was the research on retrieval as a critical component of learning. The idea is that most students study by rereading content, or highlighting content, or looking over notes, but that the research shows that forcing yourself to retrieve content, either through quizzing or elaboration or summarizing, is the strongest way to learn material.

In any case, big thumbs up from me, and I’d be interested to discuss more with anyone else who has read the book.

Sorry to bump this thread but I read Make It Stick last year and have been on an email list from a site affiliated with the book called “Retrieval Practice”

I just found out that they have ALL of their content available in google drive format

This resource includes guides on how to practice and use the skills of retrieval, transfer and interleaving.

It serves as a quick reference for those who don’t have the book but are interested in learning about the concepts.

Awesome, thanks for sharing! These look like great resources.

I’ve been trying to improve at both retrieval and interleaving since I read the book. It’s eye-opening how little emphasis is placed on both concepts in education.

I had a chance to look at some of this stuff and it is pretty compelling. Mike, do you still have the book? I’d borrow it some time if so! In looking at interleaving vs. “blocked practice,” it has me thinking about EdReady and the way I am currently implementing it. Definitely more of a blocked practice style. The good news is there appear to be some good strategies that could add interleaving into it without feeling like the whole thing needs to be reworked.

Book is on its way to you, Ben! It should arrive Wednesday at NEC.


Sure thing!

I’d be curious to hear what you think. I enjoyed it and still use stuff from it.