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Which is a better way to learn new material?

Hi everyone,

My question is pointed towards people with more experience in learning and applying web design who can help shine some light and provide their perspective.

Which approach to learning do you find to be more beneficial:

  • slowly learning one aspect of CSS (or HTML or anything really) and putting it into practice until you "get it" and then moving on, or

  • covering a slightly larger range of material more quickly and then afterwards creating a project that incorporates more things going on in the coding?

The second approach would probably involve a bit more review of the material after the initial learning than the first approach.

Your opinions would be much appreciated! Thanks!!

2 Answers

19,878 Points

In my opinion, learning a larger range of material will get you going a lot more efficiently than slowly learning a single aspect. A larger range will make it harder to remember things, but you can always go back to Treehouse for reference until you completely understand it.

Thanks for your input Josh! I was leaning towards that approach more myself, but I sometimes find myself going through a lot of new material and feeling like I haven't really soaked it up at all, you know?

19,878 Points

I know what you mean, sometimes I get through a course only by asking people what the answer is, and I even feel like I don't want to learn the language anymore because it's getting too complex for me. I usually keep going after I understand what I was struggling with, because it's usually one thing that finally sticks and that's when I get it. That's always the best part.

Zen Hess
Zen Hess
6,700 Points

This will always come down to the person. You have to evaluate the way you learn best, and apply it to what you are learning at the time. I get bored easily if I am not creating something, so a project based learning environment is great for me. Others are fantastic with definitions and theory, and don't need to be using the stuff to understand it; that is a fine way of doing things as well. Of course, some people need and do both -- the dichotomy I created is a gradient of sorts. Dynamic learning comes from exposure, explanation and experimentation.

Teaching is always a challenge because of these broad spectrum; it's why so many children fall through the cracks of my towns school system. It gauges intelligence through tests. Some kids aren't great test takers, and fail and feel inferior. They perhaps would excel in an art class, or a mechanics class or something else, because they learn and succeed in different ways.

Thanks for your input Zen :)