Posted in Online Tutoring

Memorization, Standardized Testing, and All the Tutoring In-Between

Guest post by Chris McEwen,

More and more, an increased premium is placed on information retention. Not so much knowledge gained or knowledge absorbed, but rather, information that is purely stored so as to be regurgitated upon a later date. You see this particularly with standardized testing, which obviously makes sense to a certain degree – schools, universities, and administrators all need some kind of equalizer, to determine where everyone is coming from, and what footing particular students are in relation to the letters and numbers on their respective report cards. Yet at what cost does this equal footing come?

Of course, learning takes on many forms, and in the real world, there’s in large part a value to be had to memorizing a string of numbers that’s on par to that of knowing how to decipher classic Russian literature. But by the same token, is practicality the death of originality, or at least original thinking?

Unlike a question on the SAT of course, there’s no right or wrong answer here. If a child or a student can more easily mentally retain data, then that’s absolutely fantastic, which we mean with the utmost sincerity. If anything, it could and will very well help them go through life easier (and the practicality of the matter is, better test scores certainly don’t hurt). However, if a kid is more suited to a kinetic brand, or if they’re better at processing and interpreting information than just spitting it back out, who’s to call that a weakness or a deficit of any variety?

And that’s the value of tutoring – it trains kids to sharpen any weak points they may have (be them memorization or comprehension) while helping them simultaneously explore any outside interests that can best supplement that learning. So when browsing tutors on HeyKiki and thinking about what’s best for you or your child, just remember – it’s one thing to learn something, and it’s another to just have it stuck in your head.


About Chris McEwen

Chris McEwen spent his formative years in New Jersey, though he’d prefer if you didn’t hold that against him. He has large portions of The Big Lebowski committed to memory and is probably eating a Dos Toros burrito right now.


Dane Dormio is an online tutor and academic coach who specializes in helping all types of students achieve life and academic success, especially homeschooled students and those preparing for STEM careers. More information and resources can be found on his website at

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s