Australia’s national education evidence body
Practices that improve long-term retention of learning

Overview

Spacing and retrieval involves separating learning over multiple lessons and providing opportunities for students to recall what they have previously learned in different contexts. Science indicates that this helps to commit learning to long-term memory.

Australian Professional Standards for Teachers

Spacing and retrieval practice is related to 'Focus Area 1.2 Understand how students learn' in the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers.

Research

Spacing and retrieval practice has a strong evidence base that meets our highest standards of evidence. For more information about the evidence base, see below:

Two A4 paper sheets with the AERO spacing and retrieval tried and tested guide

Tried and Tested practice guide

This guide describes a set of spacing and retrieval practices that have been found to improve students’ long-term retention of learning.
 Two A4 paper sheets with a list of references from an AERO research paper

Annotated reference list

An overview of the research evidence cited throughout our spacing and retrieval practice resources.

Using the practice

To be effective, spacing and retrieval practice need to be implemented well. See below some 'things to know' when using these practices. 

Snapshots of practice

Spacing and retrieval practice may look different in different contexts. See below examples of spacing and retrieval practice in a variety of classrooms and settings.

 

Two A4 paper sheets with the AERO spacing and retrieval teacher vignette

Teaching vignette

Short stories from practitioners about how they use an evidence-based practice in their classroom.

Implementation tools

Here you will find tools to help you implement spacing and retrieval practice  in your classroom or setting.

One A4 paper sheet with the AERO spacing and retrieval implementation checklist

Implementation checklist

Practical steps you can take to support the use of spacing and retrieval practice in your setting.
A group of 5 adults sitting and standing in front of a computer screen in discussion

Free high-quality curriculum resources

AERO has partnered with Ochre Education to provide Australian teachers free access to hundreds of high-quality curriculum resources to help drive excellence and equity in educational outcomes.

Stay up to date with AERO research & news

Subscribe form
Back to top