What is bite-sized learning and how this technique helps to learn more efficiently and quickly

A good option for those who don't have much time.

What is bite-sized learning and how does this technique help to learn more efficiently and faster

Dmitry Milokhin

Founder of Temp Online School

What is bite-sized learning and how does this technique help you learn more efficiently and faster

Dmitry Milokhin Founder of the Temp online school.

What is bite-sized learning

Bite-size learning, or the “small portions” method, is an educational approach in which the training course is divided into modules of lessons lasting from 15–20 minutes.

Lessons should be regular. During them, the system of interval repetition of the studied and various combinations of learning material, including videos, tests, chat bots and other dynamic interactive formats, are actively used.

Bite-sized learning emerged as an alternative to the classical approach with classes in 60–90 minutes. During this time, students get tired, their cognitive abilities deteriorate. Yes, and the material is absorbed worse.

According to the concept of H. Ebbinghaus. memory; a contribution to experimental psychology by cognitive scientist Herman Ebbinghaus, after 20 minutes of a lesson, students forget about a third of the mastered amount of information, after an hour – up to half, and after a month they will remember only about 20% of the material.

What is good bite-sized learning

The method has several advantages.

  • Helps to maintain concentration.Classes last 15 minutes not by chance: our brain and memory work are arranged in such a way that a person best remembers new information within 15-20 minutes, and the peak of concentration falls on the Replication and Analysis of Ebbinghaus’ Forgetting Curve/NIH for the first 5-8 minutes. In his book P. Kelley. Making Minds What's Wrong with Education — and What Should We Do about It? Making Minds: What's wrong with education Dr. Paul Kelly writes that 20-minute sessions with a break of at least 10 minutes between them provide much better memorization than long sessions without breaks.
  • It helps to achieve a specific result. The bite-sized program is built on the principle of “one lesson – one thought.” A structured presentation of the material and a limited amount of information allow you to better organize knowledge in your head and consolidate it for a long time.
  • Ensures high involvement in the process.The combination of theoretical, practical and interactive formats with elements of gamification encourages students to be constantly included in the learning process. If classes are held with a teacher, then interaction with him is also important: the more informal the learning process is, in which there is no boring cramming, the more students are involved in what is happening.
  • Assumes continuous learning: regular practice and constant repetition of a topic is the key to remembering for a long time, which is why it is important to practice every day and not take long breaks in class.
  • Helps you find time to study.Bite-sized learning with its short daily sessions for many can become the very format of studying any subject for which there was never enough time.

How does bite-size learning differ from microlearning

Bite-sized is often identified with Microlearning, or microlearning. And in vain. Microlearning is a program in which content is broken down into small blocks, or modules. Just like bite-sized learning, it has come to replace long and inefficient linear classes.

This approach also uses a mix of different content formats, including interactive, short videos, game tasks.

However, unlike bite-sized learning, the approach to classes here is more flexible. Microlearning is ideal for those who want more autonomy in their studies, because you can study anytime and anywhere, and the sequence of modules within the same course can be easily changed.

For example, today you decide to take a short 20-minute lesson about English articles, and tomorrow you switch to a video about verbs.

In bite-sized learning, the lesson program is built more consistently, since the training is focused on achieving one goal or mastering a specific topic that is studied in small portions daily.

For example, they would devote the whole week to studying articles: in order to achieve understanding of the topic, eliminate possible gaps and remember for a long time.

How it is built bite-sized learning training program

This method is always based on a specific goal, so in practice one week of classes may look like this.

The first lesson is introductory. In 20-30 minutes, general information is given on the topic, which over the next days of the week, students will have to study for 15-20 minutes in small modules with repetitions.

During the classes, students not only listen to theory, but also perform practical tasks, repeat the past or work on the mistakes. This approach allows you to avoid “smearing” the material and jumping from one topic to another.

In the bite-sized learning lesson program, there are always interactive tasks, tests and quizzes, watching educational videos so that students do not get bored. A variety of technological solutions involve students more in the process, and therefore help to keep the focus on the subject longer.

It is possible to achieve a tangible result in learning in a month, although much depends on the starting level of preparation.

Cover : frame from the film “Girls”