Review: Learn More, Study Less

Scott H Young, a fellow PBN blogger, just released an e-book entitled Learn More, Study Less. This e-book talks about how to learn as much as possible with the least effort to study. Since I consider myself a learner, I’m very interested to the topic of this e-book. I started reading it soon after I got a review copy in my inbox. But, since the e-book is 228 page long, it took some time to finish it.

This e-book introduces the concept of holistic learning in which we view learning as “a comprehensive whole, instead of a list of memorized facts”. In holistic learning, the aim is to create webs of interrelated ideas. Since the ideas are connected to each other, it will then be easier to navigate through them for complete understanding. Besides, it’s easier to reach an idea because there are many paths to it.

The e-book is divided into four parts: The Holistic Learning Strategy, Holistic Learning Techniques, Beyond Holistic Learning, and Summary & Quick Guide. Let’s look at them in more details.

Inside Learn More, Study Less

Part I. The Holistic Learning Strategy

This part gives us the background theory of holistic learning. It defines the important concepts and how they are related to each other. While this part is rather technical, there are a lot of examples to help us understand the concepts.

I agree with the author that understanding this theory is important. The theory helps us put the techniques (in part II) in the right context. Without understanding the theory, it would be difficult to adapt the techniques to our situation.

The sequence of holistic learning is also introduced in this part. The sequence consists of five phases:

  1. Acquire
    The point at which information enters through your eyes and ears.
  2. Understand
    Taking raw information and giving it a context.
  3. Explore
    Forming the models and connecting them with other ideas.
  4. Debug
    Looking for errors in your models.
  5. Apply
    Making adjustments compared to how the information operates in reality.

Understanding this sequence helps us understand where our weaknesses are so that we can focus our effort on that areas.

Part II. Holistic Learning Techniques

While part I gives us the theory, part II gives us the specific techniques that can be used to apply holistic learning. The techniques are grouped into four categories:

  1. Acquiring ideas
    Here are the techniques for the Acquire Phase. The techniques discussed here are speed reading and flow-based notetaking.
  2. Linking ideas
    Here are the techniques for the Explore Phase. The techniques discussed here are metaphor, visceralization, and diagraming. These techniques form the core of holistic learning.
  3. Handling the arbitrary
    The techniques here can be used to handle arbitrary information which can’t be handled by the techniques in the previous category. There are three techniques: the Link method, the Peg method, and information compression.
  4. Extending ideas
    Here are the techniques for the  Debug and Apply phase. There  are three techniques here: practical usage, model debugging, and project-based learning.

Part III. Beyond Holistic Learning

This part deals with how to become a productive student (so that we can study less) and how to build the habit of self-education. There are a lot of productivity tips here that deals with managing energy, procrastination, and organization, among others. There are also tips on how to structure the learning habit, overcoming frustration, and setting learning goals.

Part IV. Summary & Quick Guide

As its title says, this part gives the summary of holistic learning process along with a quick guide for easy reference.


This is a very comprehensive e-book on learning that covers both the theory and practice. It will take time to apply the concepts in this e-book. which is why the author wrote that the e-book is a handbook that you should refer to along the way. This is not the kind of books that you read just once.

While the price of the e-book ($39.95) may seem high, the quantity (288 pages) and quality of the material make it worth it. You can buy the e-book here.


  1. Thanks for the review Donald!

  2. It’s my pleasure, Scott. Keep up the great work!

  3. I’ll have to check this out.

    Take care

    Mr Positioning (Stanley F. Bronstein, Atty, CPA, Author and Professional Speaker)

  4. […] in March I wrote a review of Scott Young’s e-book Learn More, Study Less.  Learn More, Study Less is a very good […]

Comments are closed.