Hints&Tips for users of SuperMemo

Beginner level

  1. To add a new element to SuperMemo press Ctrl+A and type in the texts: question and answer (use Esc to move from the question field to the answer field and to finish editing)
  2. To learn your material choose Ctrl+L or press Learn at the bottom of the screen
  3. To move from the beginner level to the basic level, choose File : Level : Basic
  4. The key Esc is used throughout SuperMemo to close windows, dialog boxes, and set element in the default display state
  5. To master all fundamental skills needed to effectively use SuperMemo, read: Step by Step: User's Guide

Basic level

  1. To memorize only the currently displayed element press Ctrl+M or choose Remember at the bottom of the screen. Note that Ctrl+M during repetitions is equivalent to rememorizing the element and starting repetitions from short intervals again. You should use this option in case you reedit an item and thus increase the probability it would not be remembered on the next repetition
  2. If you want to move an element to the end of the queue of elements awaiting memorization, choose the button Forget (during repetitions, when this button is not visible, you can choose Ctrl+R to accomplish the same)
  3. If you want to completely remove an element from the learning process or to ignore it when memorizing new items, choose the button Dismiss. This will make the element invisible in the learning process, but still available in browsing, search, etc. (during repetitions, when this button is not visible, you can choose Ctrl+D to accomplish the same). To completely remove the element, choose Ctrl+Shift+Del. This will permanently erase it from the system
  4. To create or modify the structure of the knowledge tree read: Creating the structure of a knowledge tree
  5. To search for all elements containing a given substring, press Ctrl+F, type the substring and press Enter
  6. If you want to edit a text in previously introduced elements, find the element, click the text and use editing keys (Q, A, E, Ctrl+E, etc.)
  7. To see the calendar of repetitions, press Ctrl+W or choose Tools : Workload
  8. If you suspect file damage to your collection, press Ctrl+F12 and make a quick integrity checkup of all most important files

Middle level

  1. If you want to change the default font used by SuperMemo, press Ctrl+O, and choose SuperMemo : Default font (if you want to use more fonts in various elements, read about New font and Edit font and about templates)
  2. If you want Ctrl+A to add elements only to a given branch in the contents window, select this branch in the contents window and press Ctrl+K (this will create a new category in that branch)
  3. If you want to learn only the material belonging to a selected branch in the contents window, choose this branch and click Learn (at the bottom of the contents window)
  4. If you want to use all powers of SuperMemo, you can choose File : Level : Professional or press Ctrl+Alt+F12. Unless you use a low-resolution screen, this mode is recommended as it provides you with lots of tools that will help you understand the learning process

Professional level

  1. Apart from optimum repetitions of the learned material, the best thing about SuperMemo 2000 is incremental reading. You can start using incremental reading after reading this text: Incremental reading
  2. If you prefer to use keyboard as opposed to the mouse, read about keyboard shortcuts
  3. Display the statistics, press F5. You can use layouts to preserve your best window layout setting: arrange the windows the way you like it and choose Window : Layout : Save layout : Save as default or simply press Ctrl+Shift+F5
  4. If you had a break in learning, use Tools : Mercy. Do not forget to read about Mercy criteria!
  5. To locate and get rid of the most difficult or badly-structured material use View : Other browsers : Leeches or Tools : Options : Leeches : Wizard. This is critical for fast learning! See: Leeches in SuperMemo
  6. To turn on and off the status bar, check or uncheck Window : Status bar. The same refers to the toolbar, speedbar and hints displayed when a mouse stops over a button or a menu item
  7. To perform a random test on a node in the contents window, select the node and choose Random test on the contents pop-up menu (available, for example, with right-click). Use Ctrl+R to memorize entries that seem interesting
  8. If you want to change the look of your items, read about templates
  9. To maximize your efficiency, read SuperMemo Decalog

Incremental reading

  1. You should use Ctrl+N and Ctrl+Alt+N as your primary way of adding notes and articles to SuperMemo in incremental reading. Use Ctrl+N if you want to type some notes that will later be converted to clozes, questions-and-answers, etc. Use Ctrl+Alt+N to paste whole articles from the clipboard (e.g. from your internet browser)
  2. To randomize repetitions and article review on a given day, use Learn : Random : Randomize repetitions (Ctrl+Shift+F11)
  3. To postpone all outstanding topics (articles) use: (1) View : Outstanding, (2) Child : Topics (browser menu), and (3) Learning : Postpone (browser menu or Ctrl+Alt+P). You can use this procedure each time you run out of time for repetitions. This way, you will be able to spend your last minutes on making repetitions of active-recall items
  4. To postpone all items in your To Do branch (1) choose this branch in the contents window, (2) choose View : Selected branch (contents menu or Ctrl+Shift+Enter), (3) Child : Items (browser menu), and (3) Learning : Postpone (browser menu or Ctrl+Alt+P)
  5. To make the presentation of a given topics/article more dense (i.e. in shorter intervals), reduce topic's A-Factor: (1) choose Edit : Element parameters (element menu or Ctrl+Shift+P) and (2) edit A-Factor
  6. To ensure the optimum proportion between reading and repetitions, you could divide your work with SuperMemo into two parts: (1) random review of articles and items, and (2) repetitions of outstanding items. Allocate strict time slots for both activities and postpone topics before Step 2

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