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SuperMemo Manual
Chapter 2.3

Using the SuperMemo Software:

In this chapter, you will learn about performing and navigating in SuperMemo tests. Tests can be started in the Database List screen by tapping the number showing you the count of the test cards.

You will learn about three phases (question, answer and learning) that repeat on each card in the test, about editing, deleting, resetting and performing other operations with the card being tested, and also about the option to run the tests without touching the screen, using only the hand in which you hold your device.

You will find all this in the following topics:

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*   Question phase

With each card in a test, you will be shown a question first. When you read it, you should try to recall the answer.

When you think you know the answer or when you cannot recall any answer at all, it is time to tap the Show Answer button. This will reveal the correct answer and you can proceed to the Answer phase.

    Answer the question
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*   Answer phase

When you see the correct answer, compare it to the answer you prepared in your mind before and grade its quality on a 6-grade scale honestly. There are 3 grades (A, B and C) for a correct answer and 3 grades (D, E or F) for a wrong or no answer at all. When rating your answer, assign the grade according to the quality and promptness of your answer as follows:

Recall (correct answer)
A: Excellent and instant answer
B: Recalled with some hesitation
C: Recalled with difficulties or slight inaccuracy

Lapse (wrong or no answer)
D: Answer is very familiar. It makes you say "Doh, I knew this one!"
E: You remember seeing the answer before.
F: Complete blackout. It makes you say "I have never seen this item before!"
Most likely you will use grades A, B, C and D. You will almost never need grades E or F when working with SuperMemo regularly.
    Evaluate your answer

If you do not remember what rating is represented by each grade, you can tap the little black dot with a question mark and you will see an on-screen help with explanations of the grades.
    Tap the help button Test grade help

Assign the grade to your answer by tapping one of the 6 square buttons with letters A to F. When you do this, a button with the Next label will appear. If you want to change your rating, you can tap a different grade.

If you want to see the on-screen grade help again, cancel your current grade by tapping the selected (black) mark button and you will see the little black dot with a question mark again.

    Select your grade
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*   Learning phase

If your answer was not perfect, you should try to learn, remember, and fully understand the correct answer now. Realize what the answer means, try using it in some context, create a sample sentence, write it down, read it out, etc. This will help your brain to fix the knowledge.

Note that if you have scored your answer with C, D, E or F grade, the card is automatically inserted into a drill for you and you will have a chance to repeat it again later, after finishing the test.

If you wish to see the other side of the card (shown before as Question) just press the hardware Up button. Press it again to flip the card back. You can also press the Down button to view the Card Details.

    Learn the answer

When you have learned the correct answer, you can tap the Next button. This will open the next card and you can restart the same procedure with a new card on the Question phase again.

    Tap the Next button
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*   Stylus-free navigation

You can navigate in tests without touching the screen. This is very useful if you want to learn on the road. You can hold your handheld device in one hand and use your fingers to press the hardware buttons.

If you want to use the hardware application buttons to launch their assigned applications instead, tap anywhere on the card to leave this screen first.

To reveal the correct answer you can press either button #2, button #4 or the Center button.

    Press button #2, #4 or Center to show the answer

To evaluate your answer, you can use either buttons #1 or #3 or the Left and Right buttons.

Pressing the buttons repeatedly will move the selected grade from A to F, one grade at a time. When you reach the F grade, pressing one of the hardware buttons again will move the focus back to grade A again.

    Press button #1, #3, Left or Right to evaluate

To display the next card in the test, use either button #2, button #4 or the Center button.
    Press button #2, #4 or Center to show the next card

If there is more text on the card that can fit on the screen of your device, you can also use the hardware Up and Down buttons to scroll the card.

Card scrolling speed and distance can be adjusted using menu Card / Scrolling.

    Press Up or Down to scroll

You can always flip the card using the hardware Up button. This is useful when looking at the answer and you do not have the question included on the answer side of the card. In such case, if you wish to see the question again, you can flip the card using the Up button.

    Press Up to flip

You can always see the Card Details screen by pressing the hardware Down button. If you want this screen to pop up automatically every time you proceed to another card, check the Pop-up in tests box.

    Press Down for details

If you have checked the Pop-up in tests box, you will always see the Card Details screen before the next card is shown. You can close this window by pressing buttons #1 to #4 or the Center button.

    Press any button to close details
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*   Editing cards and other operations

When you are in the test, you can still perform a lot of operations such as editing the card, deleting or resetting it, searching for a particular card, opening and using menu commands etc. You can perform the same operations as in the Card View screen. These operations are described in the Card View chapter.

If you want to stop the test before finishing it, just tap the bottom right corner home icon. You can break the test in any of the three phases described above. The rating of the current card, if any, will not be used. Tapping the home icon will close the test immediately and you will return to the main Database List screen.

    Tap the home icon Database List view
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*   Using an external keyboard

If you have an external hardware keyboard, you can navigate in tests with it. Below is a table that shows possible commands. Please note that due to different keyboard models, available keys and drivers, some commands may not work on all keyboards.

exit the test
?show test rating help
SPACEhit the button Show Answer or Next
LEFTARROWmove the selected A-F mark left
RIGHTARROWmove the selected A-F mark right
flip the card (Question/Answer side)
or scroll the card up
scroll the card down
flip the card
(Question/Answer side)
Qshow the Question side
Ashow the Answer side
1 to 6select/unselect mark A to F
show the card details
DELETEdelete the current card
search for a card
perform a menu command using its shortcut letter

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