The Learning Pyramid: What Percentage of Learning is Retained?

There are various studies on students learning experiences. The Learning Pyramid is one of them. According to researchers, varying your study methods and materials will improve your retention and recall of information. Thus it enhances your learning experiences. That means if you have to improve your learning, you should know the way your mind works when it comes to studying. Even if you don’t know anything about it, don’t worry. In this article, we’ll tell you everything about the Learning Pyramid and how this study helps students of all ages.

Sources: Research Gate

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Developed by the National Training Laboratory, the Learning Pyramid is sometimes known as “the cone of learning.” It suggests that most students only remember 10% of what they read from textbooks, but retain around 90% of what they learn through teaching others. Thus the pyramid suggests that there are some methods of study more effective than others. Also, it emphasizes that varying study methods will lead to deeper learning and longer-term retention.

Now let’s understand the constituents of the pyramid one by one.


As you can see in the above picture, the lecture is one of the most ineffective methods of learning and retaining information. Since the lecture is simply a passive form of learning where students only sit and listen the whole time whatever spoon-fed by teachers, it is not a preferable method of learning. When it comes to acquiring information or gaining knowledge only through lectures, it is not the most effective way of learning.  

However, some auditory learners find lectures more stimulating and educational than others. Also, lectures are preferable when it comes to active class participation and taking good notes.


Although reading is more effective than a lecture, it is still one of the less effective methods of acquiring information or retaining knowledge. But nowadays, technology is changing its future. If you are a visual learner, reading textbooks can be a more effective method for you than those who are involved in a non-visual learning style.

On a practical note, reading textbooks is a necessary method of study in many academic settings. There are various strategies for reading textbooks. These strategies help improve your ability to retain and recall what you have read in books.


According to the Learning Pyramid, audio-visual is a method of study that leads to a 20% retention of information learned. This learning method incorporates different audio-visual learning tools like videos, sounds, graphics, pictures and much more.

While computer technology continues to evolve, new forms of audio-visual instructions are emerging for retention of information and effective learning. For enhancing the effectiveness of audio-visual learning and study methods combine it with others. Then it will become a more active form of study.


Learning Pyramid suggests that the demonstration method leads to 30% of information retention. But do you what does it mean? Demonstration usually involves professors providing students with a learning task that they can observe. Within the structure of this pyramid, the demonstration is the method that involves active learning.

Moreover, the demonstration offers less ambiguity than passive study methods and leads to least misconceptions with better understanding. When information is ambiguous or confusing, a demonstration can be an effective method of study.

Group Discussion

As group discussion is a form of cooperative learning, it is an active study method that leads to greater retention of information. Besides this, it promotes the material study and higher academic achievements. In contrast to competitive and individualistic approaches, the discussion is a learning style that relies on students’ interaction with other students and instructors. Intended to stimulate student thinking, it also increases participation and engagement. Group discussions can occur within classroom settings or by forming individual groups.

Moreover, there are various websites, like Call Tutors, Homework Minutes, and All Assignment Help, that help you to perform better group discussions either with experts or with other students.

Doing Practice

Learning by doing practice is a form of “discovery learning”. It is one of the most effective methods of learning. The method encourages students to take what they learn and put into practice. Thus it promotes more in-depth understanding and moving information from short-term to long-term memory. Practice by doing makes learning more effective and therefore, meaningful to students. Also, it leads to a more in-depth understanding, more retention, and better recall.

Teach Others

It is the last but not least method of the Learning Pyramid. According to this pyramid, the key to the master’s subject is to teach others. That means if you can accurately teach a subject to others, then your concepts about the subject are clear. Thus it offers super retention and information recall. The Learning Pyramid suggests that around 90% of students can retain what they learn by teaching others. The best way to accomplish this is by the peer to peer teaching method. In this method, each member of the group should take the opportunity to teach others.