Principle #3a – Repetition. Learning is facilitated by repeated experience. Repetition in learning is much more than the redundant drill and practice by which it is so often characterized. Beyond its application to learning by rote, repetition plays a significant role in the acquisition of knowledge and skills in the unplanned, informal, experiential learning of our lives. Where there exists a similarity across objects or events, there exists a pattern. Where there exists a pattern, there exists the possibility of anticipating reoccurrence of the event characteristics that make up the pattern. As we recognize these patterns we are able to respond to them in systematic and automatic ways, refining and improving our response over time. Recognition comes by way of repeated exposure to the pattern. Thus, by the same principle of repetition which makes possible the rote memorization of discrete facts we might also develop higher order skills such as closing a complex sales transaction, managing personal or business finances, or delivering a public speech. It is primarily through repetition that patterns become well established and are differentiated from what has already been learned.[1]

[1] Where there is greater significance (Principle #3f), or more easily attained contrast (Principle #3e), there is a decreased need for repetition.

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