On Declarative Knowledge

Information that a learner remembers and can restate comprises their declarative knowledge. Having learned a large body of declarative knowledge adds to individuals’ efficiency with answering questions and applying that information. For this reason, many teachers facilitate students’ learning facts in classes. The default approach to learning facts has been memorization and teachers introduce mnemonics and other strategies for remembering declarative knowledge. 

Our relationship with declarative knowledge has changed in the digital age. Cognitive and learning scientists are discovering that humans remember declarative knowledge if it is connected to concepts or themes and to other declarative knowledge. This discovery is affecting our understanding of learning at the same time the ubiquitous information networks and mobile digital devices put vast stores of information at our disposal. Together, these factors make knowledge of isolated facts much less important than it may have been previously.