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Reading Aloud Can Be a Memory Booster

HealthDay News
by -- Robert Preidt
Updated: Dec 25th 2017

new article illustration

MONDAY, Dec. 25, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Want to remember certain information? Try reading it out loud.

A new study finds that improves your chances of remembering it.

Canadian researchers asked 95 people to remember written information in four different ways: reading the information silently; hearing someone else read it; listening to a recording of themselves reading it, and reading it aloud.

Reading out loud proved to be the best way to remember the information, the study found. That "confirms that learning and memory benefit from active involvement," study co-author Colin MacLeod said in a news release from the University of Waterloo in Ontario. He's chair of the university's psychology department.

"When we add an active measure or a production element to a word, that word becomes more distinct in long-term memory, and hence more memorable," he said. MacLeod's earlier research involved how writing and typing words enhanced memory retention.

As for the "practical applications of this research," MacLeod said, "I think of seniors who are advised to do puzzles and crosswords to help strengthen their memory.

"This study suggests that the idea of action or activity also improves memory," he said. That adds to existing knowledge that "regular exercise and movement are also strong building blocks for a good memory," he added.

The findings were published recently in the journal Memory.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on memory and healthy aging.