math lecturers have nothing on me

I read somewhere that every time you read something, you’re only really internalising 10% of it, so I wanted to find out how many times I had to read my history notes – let’s estimate that reading 70% of my history notes will get me my A (though we all know it doesn’t quite work like that;  mortals like me have an asymptote where y=high B).

Amount not absorbed after n readings: (9/10)^n

Amount absorbed after n readings: 1 – (9/10)^n

Given that 1 – (9/10)^n > 0.7, least value of n is 12. 11 more read-throughs of inter-state tensions and I should be just about ready for tomorrow’s test on inter-state tensions!!!

On the other hand, let’s say you want to know how much you need to internalise per reading (= n, where 0<n<1) if you want your A in 2 readings. Hence,

Amount not internalised: (1-n)^2

To get your A: 1 – (1-n)^2 >0.7     =>     (1-n)^2 < 0.3

1-n < 0.54772 (since 1-n > 0)

n > 0.452 (3sf)

Math – telling you the things you secretly don’t really need to know since 1932


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