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Back to Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects

Learner Reviews & Feedback for Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects by Deep Teaching Solutions

75,761 ratings
21,474 reviews

About the Course

This course gives you easy access to the invaluable learning techniques used by experts in art, music, literature, math, science, sports, and many other disciplines. We’ll learn about how the brain uses two very different learning modes and how it encapsulates (“chunks”) information. We’ll also cover illusions of learning, memory techniques, dealing with procrastination, and best practices shown by research to be most effective in helping you master tough subjects. Using these approaches, no matter what your skill levels in topics you would like to master, you can change your thinking and change your life. If you’re already an expert, this peep under the mental hood will give you ideas for turbocharging successful learning, including counter-intuitive test-taking tips and insights that will help you make the best use of your time on homework and problem sets. If you’re struggling, you’ll see a structured treasure trove of practical techniques that walk you through what you need to do to get on track. If you’ve ever wanted to become better at anything, this course will help serve as your guide. This course can be taken independent of, concurrent with, or prior to, its companion course, Mindshift. (Learning How to Learn is more learning-focused, and Mindshift is more career-focused.) A related course by the same instructors is Uncommon Sense Teaching. To join the fully translated Portuguese version of the course, visit: To join the fully translated Spanish version of the course, visit: To join the fully translated Chinese version of the course, visit: To join the fully translated French version of the course, visit :

Top reviews

Aug 1, 2020

This course accumulates a clear and valuable set of thoughts that structure knowledge about learning principles and tactics. Also, it was interesting to know some new things about how the brain works.

Apr 28, 2017

This was a great course! I learned a number of different techniques and strategies for learning more effectively that I can't wait to implement in my studies. I highly recommend Learning How to Learn.

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626 - 650 of 10,000 Reviews for Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects

By Ethan R

Dec 2, 2016

You're on coursera to learn right? This course teaches you how to learn effectively. So while learning to learn might seem like a strange concept (after all you've been doing it all your life) I would advise you to start with this course. That way, you can learn any later course better.

This course covers multiple learning techniques and, frankly, a load of techniques which are great to adopt for mental health reasons. This course shows you how to improve yourself more than any course I've come across. Everything is well explained, well sourced and effective. As a bonus, the additional interviews are fascinating.

By Anna B

Feb 23, 2021

I thought the course was presented in an organized and thoughtful manner with a little humor, too.

The segments were a nice size, not too full of information at any one time.

Please tell the professor that I was particulary impressed with the idea that one can solve problems when one is asleep. My mother was a dressmaker, and at times she would be stuck on how to place the pattern on the material in order to get the effect she wanted. She would go to sleep, and in the morning she had the answer. That was over 60 years ago. Who knew that she had discovered what scientists would later verify.

Thank you.

By Piotr W

Apr 3, 2017

It's the first MOOC I completed! And it was amazing journey! Learning How to Learn is a great motivator, it encourged me to learning, it braodens horizons... I recomend it to everybody! The course improved my self-esteem... The tutors are great! The material was easy to understand and not so demanding. It was a pleasure to watch the videos! I think the test were sometimes to easy, and you just need to rembember the exact words from the videos, there was almost no need for self-thinking, but still I am extremely happy that my first completed MOOC is Learning How to Learn! It will help me with the new courses ;)

By Ahmed B

Jan 19, 2016

Extremely helpful for people of all ages and from all walks of life. The only really bad thing about this course is that this was not available when I was in school or in my undergrad years. Though, currently I am doing PhD, I still feel its positive effects in my life. I didn't know that this course, which I started in my leisure time, will have long lasting effects on life and the way I think and solve personal and professional issues.

Hats off to you Barbara Oaklay, your team and cherishing long journey derived by your passion.

Last but not least thanks to Coursera Team for creating such a wonderful platform.

By Marty K

Jan 24, 2021

I initially took this course to gain confidence in my ability to complete and do well in an on-line course. I accomplished these goals as well as learning a number of techniques that have helped me to overcome hurdles to my own learning such as procrastination. I hope to share my learning with my children to support their education and help them to move them forward in their studies using a variety of the tools that I have learned. I also plan to use this as a springboard to advance my career by completing more online courses which will allow me to branch out into new disciplnes and expan my marketability.

By adrienne l

Oct 2, 2018

The course was easy to do but I gained a lot of practical advice on studying/learning techniques that are immediately applicable. I also enjoyed the part where we learned the scientific reasons to some of the background processes that drives learning and the fallacies/common misconceptions related to learning. There were many concepts that I already know prior to the course but this course helped me consolidate my knowledge and also increased my enthusiasm in learning something new or challenging. The presenters, Dr Barbara Oakley & Dr Terrence Sejnowski are both very personable and delivered the course well.

By Михалева М С

Feb 5, 2018

The course was created with interest and painstakingly, but half of it was obvious for me: the discussed techniques are possible to see at schools: for example, all the pupils know, that you need to practice and study information by chapters in a long period, not in the last night before exam.

But in the whole that was a cool expirience and I found some useful tips. Good analogies which were used in videos helped me to remember rules of effective study better. Furthermore it was a good practice for my English, I enjoyed while listening Barbara Oakley's narrative.

Thanks for creators of the course and good luck!

By Patricia S

Jan 19, 2021

One of the most informative classes I have ever taken. The research was fascinating! The use of visuals and videos made even the most complex and challenging topics easy to understand. The sharing of specific techniques and varied styles of teaching were also helpful. The team approach to teaching and sharing of knowledge was terrific. The recommendations for additional reading/learning were/are much appreciated. Read Dr. Oakley's book 'A Mind for Numbers - How to Excel at Math and Science (Even if you flunked Algebra), as I was taking the course and am now reading Moonwalk with Einstein by Joshua Foer.


Jan 11, 2021

Amazing material. The curse contains information highly recommended for everyone than wants to study effectively, or wants to learn and doesn't feel capable, or wants to make the best out of their time.

Every new technique to learn better is backed up by research, and all the material used to make this lectures is also on the references for people to go deeper into it.

I was a little bit sceptic at the beginning of the course, but this is not one of Coursera's number one classes just because: this is a fundamental class that, if taken seriously, will work as a base to keep building knowledge in other courses.

By Karen T

Sep 29, 2020

One of the best courses I've taken in Coursera thus far. I consider myself as someone who works well once I’ve discovered how certain systems work, which is why I find it incredibly important that this course taught me how mind works. Being able to understand the different modes of thinking has also allowed me to embrace my humanity and actually be okay with it – that is, because I used to think that resting and sleeping are usually counterproductive for when I’m trying to learn. I find this course essential to people of all age brackets and sizes! It helped me understand my potential and actually act on it.

By Mehmet K

Nov 5, 2019

Bu kurs hakkında bulunan yorumlardan birçoğu İngilizce olduğu için Türkçe açıklama yapma gereği hissettim kendimden çünkü bu kursu her İngilizce bilen her insanın, özellikle hayat boyu öğrenme gayreti olacak insanların, almasını şiddetle tavsiye ettiğim 2 tane eğitim ile ilgili uzmanlıkları olan Profesörlerin birtakım işlevsel ve bilimsel tanımlar, örnekler, tüyolar ve kazanımlar vererek "öğrenmeyi öğrenme" konusunu başarılı şekilde aktarıyorlar. Kurs ücretsiz lakin belli bir plana uymayı gerektirebilir verim almak için. Belki de Coursera ya da MOOClar arasındaki en faydalı kurslardan biri diye düşünüyorum.

By Wenye Z

Jul 27, 2017

Great stuff! I had a blast with these videos - kinda literally, as I played nearly everything at 1.75x the speed. It was still really fun though, and very useful as well. To be honest, many of the topics that were touched upon were things I had vaguely figured out through my own experiences. However, this course has crystallised and validated those ideas to the point where I feel confident in applying them in real life. I'm absolutely certain that some of my past frustrations with learning were from NOT following the advice here. Thank you for this course! It will help me a lot for my current career-change!

By Hisham E

Sep 7, 2015

The concepts of chunking, diffused and focused mode or learning, memory, recall, spaced repetition and and beating procrastination through immersing in the process that leads to a product were beautifully introduced in this course by Barbara Oakley and her co-instructors. The material is presented in such a nice way that makes someone readily identify with what one needs to do in order to become a better learner.

I recommend this course to everyone regardless of how skillful at learning they are. Understanding your brain and memories is a nice exercise on your road to mastering tough subjects. Kudos Barbara

By Pore J

Aug 14, 2015

I registered the course in order to help me understand more about my brain and improve my learning ability. That’s satisfied!

The first week, I feel like both of professors are so weird and the video lectures like the 1960s movie. Surprisingly, after the first week I was looking forward to see them and the next session. I very much enjoy it. I like the course content- understanding how the brain work and how to get better brain.

I am very much happy that I had undertaken the Learning How to Learn course. And thank you so very much Dr. Barb Oakley and Dr. Terry Sejnowski for this course. Happy learning ever :)

By Kumar M

Aug 29, 2019

The course was very well detailed and helped me broaden my understanding of the learning process much much more. Both the teachers taught in a very interactive way and I very much liked their teaching style. The bite-sized tests at the end of each video were very helpful in retaining the key parts of the material. I am very sure that this course that I just finished will help me in all areas of my life and definitely will help me learn faster and more effectively, now that I have a brief knowledge of how our brain works. I will recommend this course to anyone who wants to learn, "How to learn effectively".

By Isaac B

Jul 31, 2020

Extraordinary course!Wonderful teachers who are enthusiastic, passionate, and entertaining conveying these simple but Highly effective tips and techniques to make learning easy.Deep insights into the working of the mind, and how it works has helped me battle procrastination, become task oriented (by focusing on the processes not the product), and taught me the secrets to retain what I have learned.It's a wonder that this course isn't taught in every school. I went through 12+ years of education and this information was never taught to me.Thank you for this free and powerful course.To a life of learning!

By Payal T

May 24, 2020

I am 35 and this course took me back to my school/college days and i could really compare that yes unknowingly i was applying, the well defined techniques of this course , by default and those helped me really well in achieving my dream career. I remember i used to write every illustration to feed it in my permanent memory. Also i used to thoroughly read the entire theory part before starting the mathematics illustrations. So i understand and can relate to this course very practically but yes there are enumerous value additions that this course has made in my learning way. Thank you Barbara and Terren.

By Lucas V

Jul 21, 2017

Can you imagine a course that can change your life? Learn how to learn is a course like this! I'm 29 old and I'd like to had the opportunity to took this course fifteen years early. Whatever I'm profoundly happy to know better how my brain works. How to improve my memory, how to avoid procrastination, to avoid impostor syndrome and a lot of very interesting stuff. I'me a lecturer in Brazil and I will spread the contents of that course to a thousands of brazilian people. Everybody needs to know this contents. My special thanks to Barbra Oakley, Terence Sejnowski and Coursera's team! You made a great job!

By kathryn

Nov 6, 2015

This course has been utterly brilliant. I almost cannot describe the important things I've learnt, the new techniques to try and the confidence it's given me. I am hoping to study a Masters of Research next year, however, it's been a long time since I've done any formal study. This course has given me the confidence to believe I can be successful in my studies, as well as the techniques to make sure that is true. I would recommend it to *anyone* who is considering a new course of study after a period of non-study. This course gives you the tools and confidence to study anything. It is utterly brilliant.

By Charchit

Jun 15, 2019

The thing is I love learning new things and try continuously to learn new skills. And that's the reason this course attracts me. After completing this course I came to learn about my brain and its working and how can I use my brain more efficiently. Also came to know about various techniques few I already using, few I learnt new and came to know what I was doing wrong.

So I would recommend this course to all students out there. Also recommend it to those who like to learn new things or trying to switch career by learning.

This course gives insight how can you do better in your academic/professional life.

By Matthew S

Jul 10, 2017

All the content in this course is really interesting and useful. I watch it at 1.5x speed most of the time.

This class should be required education before attempting to learn anything else. The idea that nearly all students are expected to learn subjects without having first being taught how to learn is ridiculous.Note to Barbara Oakley for whoever is managing this MOOC: Please remove the repetitive superfluous phrases from quizzes, "as several of the videos mentioned," "as one video emphasized," etc. Just remove all references to the videos. They are unnecessary, and only make the quizzes take longer.

By Manjit S

May 6, 2020

THIS Course is extremely useful for every one.The way Barbara Oakley explains is fab .I would recommend any one who is sitting free to utilize their time by doing this course u will love it professor Terrence Sejnowski teaches the working of our mind that will be great help for people not only for particular subjects like maths and science but in each part of life. One could apply THESE principles can take a full control over the procrastination. The course teach exactly what we need to overcome procrastination and will be enjoying various process in their life.Why r u waiting for enroll it now.

By Armando F

Feb 13, 2016

Muy buen curso, creo que todos los estudiantes desde la educación primaria, deberían tener una capacitación previa en el sentido del aprendizaje, y en las herramientas que permiten una mayor retención de lo aprendido. Cuantas veces hemos estudiado alguna materia solo para poder rendir un examen y luego en el tiempo nos damos cuenta que no podemos recordar absolutamente nada de lo que habíamos leído. La base fundamental no solo es adquirir nuevos conocimientos sino que ademas puedan permanecer en nuestra memoria de manera permanente, y este curso proporciona herramientas muy importantes para ese fin.

By Renato G d S

Oct 15, 2016

Very good insights. It is nice to understand how your brains works when it is involved on a leaning process. And even though, it uses some concepts and tips we already know, it is also important to rethink about then, for knowing something exists does't mean you use it properly.

The teacher are just spectacular. The lessons are really enjoyable. And i found it quite useful to learning and practice English.

The questions on the and of each video are very good. They are obvious most of the time but, by reading then, we use the recalling process taught on the second week, and it helps us to chunk then.

By Bohdan P

Apr 23, 2020

ENG|UA This course is very powerful. There are a lot of interesting and, what is important, helpful information and practice advices how to use your brain more effectively. And the main teller – dr. Barbara – has a very nice voice, so listening to her is not only interesting, but also enjoyable. Don`t think – JUST JOIN and ENJOY IT!

Надзвичайно корисний та захоплюючий курс. Багато практичних порад, підкріплених багатьма дослідженнями, та інтерв'ю з фахівцями у своїй сфері, які діляться своїм досвідом з навчання. Тому не тягніть кота за хвіст, а реєструйтеся на курс) Приємного навчання про навчання!