How to effectively master the Advanced English Collection

The recommended learning time for the Advanced English collection is four years, 40 minutes per day. However, an impatient learner might try to master the collection in its entirety in one year or earlier (the greatest reported speed of memorizing Advanced English to-date is 3,000 items per month; May 1995). In this last case, the learning time may be as great as four hours per day. The best and tried algorithm for working with the Advanced English collection is:

  1. Choose the daily working time between 5 and 40 minutes per day
  2. Using File: New, create your accessory collection MyWords in which you will store:
    • unfamiliar vocabulary used in definitions of Advanced English
    • specialized vocabulary which cannot be found in Advanced English
    • phrases and grammar notes that you wish to remember
  3. Look at the watch to control your working time and get SuperMemo running
  4. Open Advanced English
  5. If the Outstanding parameter in the main window is different from 0+0 (note, that in the first session Outstanding always equals 0+0), choose Learn : Learn all. Repeat items scheduled for repetition on the given day, i.e. until Outstanding=0+x. Respond with No to “Do you want to memorize new items?”, and pass the Final drill (until Outstanding=0+0).
    Remember to be active. Modify items that are hard to remember, add examples, add clues in your native language (or better yet, in English), etc. Collect your propositions for the improvement of the collection and send them to SuperMemo. Your remarks will be used in later, improved releases of the collection
  6. Open MyWords
  7. If the Outstanding or Intact parameters are different from zero then repeat all outstanding items until Outstanding=0+0, and memorize all newly appended words and phrases until Intact=0 (in the first session Outstanding always equals 0+0 and, in MyWords, Intact equals 0)
  8. If you have time left, open Advanced English again, choose Learn : Learn all, respond with Yes to “Do you want to memorize new items?”, and memorize as many new items as you have time left (daily working time was determined in Step 1, and the beginning of the session was checked in Step 3)
    Delete items that you do not wish to remember. Forget items that you want to memorize later. If you do not understand some of the questions or definitions: (1) use Search to locate difficult words and Remember to memorize them, or (2) use a dictionary and put problematic words and phrases to MyWords. Add some clues in your native language (or better yet in English) to those questions that seem most difficult.
  9. Exit SuperMemo (e.g. by pressing Alt+F4). Use English as often as you can: listen, read, write and converse. Write down new words and phrases and put them to MyWords collection. You will notice that SuperMemo allows you to quickly increase the level of understanding and fluency in using the language. This shall charge you with additional power for working with the program
  10. One day after you quit SuperMemo in Step 9 go to Step 3. If you have no time on that day, remember to get to SuperMemo as early as your schedule permits. Every day you don't work with SuperMemo, you gradually lose what you have already learned, and you increase your total workload

If your knowledge of English is limited, you may initially have serious problems working with Advanced English. It may even appear that you will memorize more items in your MyWords collection than in Advanced English. However, your problems shall disappear as soon as you pass through the first thousand items. If you are a complete beginner, we recommend that you start out with the Basic English SuperMemo collection in your national version (if available), and back it up with the English Grammar collection

Some alternative algorithms for working with Advanced English are:

  • Use Search : Find to locate interesting words and phrases and commit them to memory with Remember
  • Use Random test, memorize interesting items with Remember and delete items of no interest with Delete

You can also combine all the three above algorithms to optimally control the way you progress with acquiring new knowledge of English