With so many home learning courses on offer, the opportunity to learn has never been more accessible or available – and no surprise that people who have been out of the classroom for many years are once again, taking up the challenge of expanding their minds.

Many people find that they struggle to remember things and re-call them when they need to. Your brain, you may feel, is awash with irrelevant information, clouded and fog-like and as about as much use as candy floss.

You will be pleased to know, however, that this is reversible and here are ten simple, brain training tips to learn faster…

Work on your memory

Struggle to remember a shopping list longer than three items? Then this simple exercise is for you.

Your brain works better to re-call things when it associates the item or person with something else. So instead of trying to remember walnuts, brown sugar and eggs, associate these three items with what you intend doing with them e.g. walnuts, brown sugar and eggs for Christmas cake.

Try something new… and do it again… and do it again

The best way of keeping your brain alive and alert is to do something new, and keep doing it. And small steps are the perfect way to start.

This is essentially about repetition and learning a new skill that needs to be practiced. When you study home courses, you will be trying something new like reading a piece of medical jargon or technical text. It can be tough and this reading the whole two pages can seem a daunting tasks. In this case, you would take it paragraph by paragraph.

And if you don’t understand it, read it again.

Learn something new

And this brings us nicely to point number three. The more you use your brain – and we mean really use it – the ‘better’ it will be. The muddle we feel our brain is in before we start learning, is a fog that will clear as you use it more.

Try brain training programs

You may have laughed at those early versions of brain training programs on various hand-held game consoles but there is some merit in them. Take a look at BrainHQ and see what you think…


You may have had an inkling that somewhere in the list we were going to talk about exercising the body too and here it is.

We are not suggesting you take out an expensive gym membership but that you understand being physically fit also contributes to how well your brain can function. So, instead of catching the bus home, how about a 20-minute brisk walk.

Don’t overdo it

Just like physical activity, if you do too much all at once, you could end up tearing a muscles, leaving you with soreness and, worse, becoming demotivated. The same is true when it comes to learning.

Two hours of studying could yield less than 20 minutes of speed-study.

Crosswords are not brain stretchers

Might seem odd to include this but many people think that crosswords are the perfect way of sharpening the brain. They may keep it active a little, but there is no scientific proof that says crosswords stretch the grey matter.

Eat well

Just like exercise, you knew there was bound to be a reference to eating – and eating healthily. So yes, here it is.

Whilst there is no diet that can help you be brainier, there are some foods which can boost how we feel about ourselves. Omega 3, commonly found in oily fish, is thought to be a great way of bolstering the grey matter.

Staying hydrated too is also thought to help with keep the brain ticking over more effectively.

Enjoy it

The one thing about learning is that it should be enjoyable, probably the reason why many people found school stressful and unappealing. With home learning courses you can learn in the comfort of your own home and at your own pace, making it far more enjoyable.

Speed isn’t everything but understanding is

Although you may want to get through your course as quickly as possible, it is important to remember that when it comes to studying, speed is not of the essence – but understanding is. Just because you are slow to grab one concept but not another, does not make you stupid or ‘slow’. It means you need to spend more time looking at the module and the content.

About the Author

NCC Home Learning has a range of home learning courses students use to either or push forward in their current careers or to find a new one. There are some students who also enjoy the challenge of learning as a means of keeping their brain active and efficient.