The scientific research behind how Quizlet works

Studying on Quizlet is fun, but it’s also effective. Robust learning science principles guided us in creating tools to help you learn.

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Retrieval practice

The more you practice recalling a piece of information or retrieving it from memory, the more likely you are to remember it later on. This psychological finding explains why it’s so much more effective to study with flashcards or by taking a practice test than it is to look over your notes until you feel like you know them. Getting feedback enhances the effect further. Quizlet’s study tools are designed to help you maximize the benefits of retrieval practice. Keep practicing retrieval, even after you get a question right the first time!

Question types

The question types on Quizlet were carefully designed to help you study effectively and efficiently. When you answer written questions from memory (instead of copying over answers), this requires effortful retrieval or “recall”, which really helps you learn. Multiple choice questions are designed to get you through more questions in less time, with the added bonus of helping you learn the incorrect answer choices. If you study with flashcards or multiple choice questions, make sure to try to recall the right answer before you look at the solution!

Guidance fading

Learning is most effective when you get more instructional support early on, but gradually have less and less until the guidance is “faded” completely — and you’re doing all the work on your own. Quizlet provides this progression by moving you from easier multiple choice questions to more challenging written questions when you study with Quizlet Learn. When you start studying, you might get multiple choice answers correct by process of elimination, or simply by recognizing the right answer, without practicing recall like you do with written questions.