Learning anatomy: a strategy for memorizing muscles

What's the best way to memorize the muscles of the arm? Cathy discusses her two-step approach to developing adaptive expertise in anatomy, which will play a big role in our future careers—scroll to the bottom to find out where we're headed next year!

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Hit the Ground Running: A Quick Guide to Mastering the Memory Palace Before School Starts

We’ve received a few messages recently from people who are starting a professional school this year. While we love the memory palace technique, there can be a significant barrier to use, especially if you're about to enter a high-stakes learning environment. Here's an easy one-month ramp up to mastering the palace technique before you start a new learning adventure.

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The Body Palace: Memorizing the Review of Systems

A key tool in the physician’s arsenal is the review of systems, or ROS—a run-through of pertinent symptoms while taking a patient history. To the novice clinical student, it can feel overwhelming. Medical students often first learn the ROS as Alex did—as a giant, inscrutable list of symptoms. Here’s how he uses a memory technique to tackle it painlessly.

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It's in the Genes: How to Memorize Tricky Number/Letter Associations

Our newest question comes from a reader who’s a medical student in Italy: “I use a lot the memory palace for my studies but I was wondering if you can help me to memorise in an easy way the genes, because they are made with letters and numbers for example: BRCA1, FGFR1, HLA, Cn3D.... something like this! I hope this can be helpful for all the other medical students.”

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Memory Tips for Medical Students (Live Seminar) [Video]

A short seminar we recently gave to the first year class at our medical school. It covers some science-backed tips we think every learner should know. 

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How to Memorize the Entire Facial Nerve Using a Memory Palace [Video]

In this 20-minute video, Alex walks through how to memorize the entire facial nerve (cranial nerve VII) using a memory palace. The facial nerve is a key player in neuroanatomy and pops up during gross anatomy in medical school.

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3 Reasons Why You Should Be Using Memory Palaces (and Not Only Standalone Images)

Standalone mnemonics are also a relatively simpler yet still effective way for, say, an absolute beginner to pick up new foreign language vocab. When it comes to carefully learning structured material, however, I’ve found there to be three main arguments in favor of palaces.

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How to Use Memory Palaces to Learn Chinese: Putting the System into Practice [Video]

In this video, I walk through a memory palace-based learning session, focusing on examples and the different tools I use. This one builds on my earlier two blogs describing the system. Here's how to make tricky tones and endings really stick. (26:02)

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Do Memory Palaces Hinder Learning? Our Top 3 Don't-Miss Tips

If you're someone struggling to apply memory palaces, look no further. Here I discuss my top 3 realizations about memory techniques as they pertain to learning—the ones that took my approach from frustratingly ineffective to invaluable.

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Never Forget What You Learn: 4 Reasons You Should Be Using Anki in Medical School and Beyond

Anki, powered by spaced repetition, is a powerful tool for making things stick long-term, and I can't imagine learning without it—even with the aid of memory palaces. Here's why you should be combining spaced repetition with memory palaces to get the most from medical school and beyond.

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