Memorizing Study Techniques - Presentations

Students need to be able to memorize a lot of material nowadays. It is always helpful to have more techniques to get studies and theories to stick in your mind. You may hate when your teacher makes you do presentations but there is new research suggesting presentations may be one of the best ways to remember important material.

This study was related to semantic, deep processing of material which is part of the IB psychology syllabus. The researchers wanted to investigate whether participants' memory of material would be affected by knowing they had to teach the information afterwards. Using an independent measures design (between subjects), both groups read the same passage of text. One group was told they were going to teach the material afterwards while the other group was not told anything. The dependent variable was the participants' memory for the material. They found that the group which believed they were going to teach had significantly better recall and more organized memory about the passage they read compared to the other group. This suggests believing you are going to teach increases your attention to detail and the way you organize information when you know you have to pass it on to others.

This is quite a cool study but in practice it makes little sense for every student to teach every point on the syllabus. In addition, in a follow up study they used fill in the blank questions as the dependent variable and the teaching group only had marginally better recall. Perhaps testing students by having them write an essay or create a powerpoint and having other participants judge the quality of information would be a better measure.

Still, we all know when we have done presentations on a topic the information generally sticks better than if we just skim read. This could still be a viable technique for revising, I always recommend students to create their own study guides and practice lots of exam questions.

I have gotten some valuable feedback from IB Psychology students on my first ebook. One student said it was full of useful information and she liked how I used examples to show what I mean. I really want this to be a valuable behind the scenes guide to doing well on the exams, so the more reviewers the better the final product will be. My aim is to produce another draft by the end of this week so if you would like to review the new draft and get a sneak peak of Exam Technique Secrets, email

Exam Technique Reviewers Needed

I have written Exam Technique Secrets and need some quality feedback and reviews from IB Psychology students in their 2nd year or alumni who have completed IB Psychology before I publish the final product.

Exam Technique Secrets explains and summarizes everything I know from subject reports and mark schemes about how to maximize your marks and give your examiners what they want. Using these techniques is how I got a 7 in IB Psychology. If you are interested and motivated to get a 7 and have some free time then send me an email at for further details.

Biological Page Updated

The site has received a makeover so it is much cleaner and easier to navtiage. I have updated the biological page and fixed some broken links. More fixes are on the way. Remember you can always email me feedback or suggestions to improve this site.

Upcoming Updates

I have been very busy with school and have not updated in a while. I am currently creating my ultimate study guides which will be available as a downloadable PDF.

The titles include:

  • Exam Technique - The inside information I give to all my students for nailing exam technique which includes information from the annual Psychology Subject Reports and Mark Schemes
  • Nailing the Internal Assessment - In this guide all of the information required to achieve a high mark in the IA will be provided
  • Last Minute Study Guides - Condensed versions of the material I deliver at Lanterna's revision courses where I go over the entire syllabus (excluding options) in just 16 hours
These are my current priority and then I will update some of the free content on here which is still missing some important details.

Happy Revising :)

Videos Back up

My apologies for the videos being down. I have reactivated my 4shared account and they should all be working now. Please report any broken links and I will fix them.

Evolutionary Altruism


  • Altruism is when you perform a behavior for someone (to increase their survival) at a cost to yourself (like getting hurt) without any clear benefit to yourself
  • Having altruistic individuals in your group builds social cohesion which can strengthen the group because you have individuals willing to sacrifice themselves to benefit the survival of the group
  • People can sacrifice their time to gather food for the whole group
  • People can put themselves in danger to ensure the survival of a group member

Prosocial Humans and Chimps (Warneken and Tomasello, 2006) PDF

  • Aim: Will humans and captive chimps help someone if given the opportunity?
  • Method: Experimenter makes it clear to the chimp and human that they need help with something
    • The dependent variable was whether the child or human helped the experimenter
  • Results: Human infants help most of the time
  • Chimps help when they understand the goal of the experimenter
  • Conclusion: Helping behavior may be innate and determined by genes which makes evolutionary sense since strong social bonds means groups may be more likely to survive
    • Altruism may have evolved from a common ancestor that both humans and chimps share
  • Evaluation: They only used captive chimps which may have been helping the experimenter (who was their caretaker) because they know the caretaker provides them with food
    • This experiment tells us nothing about how helpful wild chimps are
      • Follow up experiments have shown that wild chimps do help their fellow wild chimps and not just their caretakers

Here are some clips from the Warneken and Tomasello (2006) study

Evaluation of Evolutionary Arguments

  • Testing evolutionary theories of behavior is empirically difficult so researchers may be led astray by confirmation bias
  • We know little, if anything, about Homo sapien behavior - it is purely speculative
    • We can never know how extinct species behaved
  • Disregard the role of culture in shaping behavior
  • There is a tendency for researchers to anthropomorphize animal behavior
    • A famous example is elephants who stand around dead elephants for some time which can be interpreted as the elephants grieving