One of the things I’ve tried to incorporate into my language learning since I found All Japanese All The Time recommend using an SRS (or e-Flashcards if you will) to retain vocabulary. In the past I’ve used Anki and look up various decks based on the language I was primarily focusing on at the time. While using LingQ’s 4 different SRS cards at the same time. But after a while I started to experience a large backlog of my Anki decks. Whenever I forget to do an SRS session the cards would accumulate to the point where I lose the motivation to continue doing them.
How Do I Keep Up With My Flashcards?
It’s a good idea to incorporate an SRS session into your daily routine so that it becomes almost second nature to do them. This will prevent your vocabulary from piling up and causing you to feel overwhelmed over time. It might be a good idea to keep a to do list or schedule to enable your vocabulary knowledge to increase significantly.
Delete Cards Often
Why is this important? Don’t you want to keep them in you forget them? At some point or other you could get bored and won’t be able to bear going through the same deck any more. Khatzumoto recommends you stop doing SRS reps and delete what’s no longer relevant to you and discover new decks that are engaging and useful to you. I found that if I’m overwhelmed with cards, it’s time to delete cards I don’t need from that particular deck or delete the entire deck and re-add it.
Add Context To Your Vocabulary
This will help establish how each word can be used and which context is appropriate to use it. I like to have an example sentence to assist with understanding the overall meaning of the word or its purpose in a sentence. Some words don’t have a translation and are simply used to add emphasis, time, frequency, the topic of the sentence and so on. Which means knowing the context of these words, whether they are tag words or particles that are essential to getting your meaning across.
Using Your Phone To Keep You On Track
I don’t know about you but I’m someone who is constantly on the go so I don’t always have time to be on my laptop. Which is why I love the advancements in mobile phone technology that allows us to do an incredible amount of things. Such as downloading an SRS app like Anki to do your repetitions wherever you go. I know I use a wide range of apps to help me learn languages and I definitely use(d) an SRS app too. All right, I haven’t used one lately (unless you include the ones on the iLingQ app!) but that doesn’t mean I won’t again in the future!
What do you think? Does using an SRS work well for learning vocabulary? Do you prefer to have paper flashcards? Have you found them distracting? Does it prevent you from actually learning the vocabulary by making it simply “SRS” vocabulary instead of a supplement to your language learning? I’d love to hear how SRSing works or doesn’t work for you!