By way of the ever-indispensable Instapundit comes this article from Psychology Today headlined, “Have Scientists Finally Discovered Evidence for Psychic Phenomena?” Now, of course, we all know that when a headline ends in a question mark, the answer is, “No, but we thought we’d write an article about it anyway.”
That said, this is kind of interesting stuff, if by interesting I mean bizarre and, for all I know, I do. As I understand it, the researcher had subjects essentially study for tests AFTER they took the tests and found it improved their scores BEFORE they studied:
In one of the studies, college students were given a list of words and after reading the list, were given a surprise recall test to see how many words they remembered. Next, a computer randomly selected some of the words on the list as practice words and the participants were asked to retype them several times. The results of the study showed that the students were better at recalling the words on the surprise recall test that they were later given, at random, to practice. According to Bem, practicing the words after the test somehow allowed the participants to “reach back in time to facilitate recall.”
This is excellent news for me, I reckon. I pretty much ducked and dodged my way through school–but after I somehow managed to graduate, I knuckled down and read every book we’d been assigned. Thus I received an excellent four year college education in only about fifteen years… with the added benefit that I got to make up my own mind about what I was reading.
The question is: are my test scores now better in retrospect?