Retrieval-Based Learning: Research at the Interface between Cognitive Science and Education

Abstract

This essay reviews research on retrieval-based learning, which refers to the general finding that practicing active retrieval enhances long-term,meaningful learning. The idea that retrieval promotes learning has existed for centuries, and the first experiments demonstrating retrieval practice effects were carried out near the beginning of experimental research on learning and memory. Interest in retrieval practice was sporadic during the past century, but the topic has received intense interest in recent years as part of a broadermovement to integrate research from cognitive sciencewith educational practice. The essay provides a selective review of foundational research and contemporarywork that has been aimed at deepening our theoretical knowledge about retrieval practice and integrating retrieval-based learning within educational activities and settings.

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