Photo by Sunni Brown

Photo by Sunni Brown

Whether you call yourself an artist or not, everyone can doodle. Doodling is the casual, spontaneous drawing (or for some, mark-making) that we use to support thinking out a problem or concept.

Doodling boosts comprehension, retention and recall, increases insights, elevates creativity, faster decisions, and allows you to organize information on a small and large scale with increased clarity. JFK would doodle words or names, while Larry Page (cofounder of Google) has been quoted saying that it was mandatory for his team to write down their project names and then rank them in order to prioritize. Both Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton are well-known for doodling in White House meetings, and in the new book The Doodle RevolutionSunni Brown thinks you should too:

Three researchers studying the effects of doodling and drawing on student’s ability to learn science discovered that when students shift their focus from interpreting presented visuals to creating their own visual representations, they have a considerably deeper learning experience. The doodling students in this study demonstrated heightened abilities to generate new inferences, amplify and refine their reasoning, clarify their conceptual understanding for other audiences, and engage at a profound and even “striking’ ” level compared with students who were just reading or reading and writing summaries. Based on these observations, the researchers advocated that drawing be recognized as a key element in education, right up there in value with reading, writing, and having group discussions.

Because of the lack of pressure on the actual “quality” of the doodle, Brown argues that this is the perfect tool for everyone in the room to use without fear of judgement or worry over artistic skills (or lack thereof). 

Check out her book and website to learn more. 

  • Andy Mort

    Love it! If there’s one thing I remember everyone doing at school it’s doodling. And if there was one thing that teachers would get really annoyed about…that’s right! It was kids doodling. I still doodle. A lot.

  • Josh LeBlanc

    I have never really thought about this, but its cool because ill doodle randomly and then it will spark inspiration out of nowhere. Also I have noticed doodling relieves a lot of stress for me at least. Its a simple release that allows you to escape but at the same time is a way to be creative and productive.

  • Arp

    I knew all those drawings of superheroes would one day be vindicated by research…

blog comments powered by Disqus