That's true if you're just using spaced repetition to memorize, although I'd add that it's still often helpful to overlearn definitions and simple results just past the boundaries of your understanding, along the lines of Prof. Ravi Vakil's advice for potential students:

Here's a phenomenon I was surprised to find: you'll go to talks, and hear various words, whose definitions you're not so sure about. At some point you'll be able to make a sentence using those words; you won't know what the words mean, but you'll know the sentence is correct. You'll also

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If you learn definitions it's important to sit down and actually understand the definition. If you write a card before you understand it, that will lead to problems.

Open thread, January 25- February 1

by NancyLebovitz 1 min read25th Jan 2014318 comments

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If it's worth saying, but not worth its own post (even in Discussion), then it goes here.