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Are Cute Cats the Key to Language Learning?

#Amusing #photos of cats have become a firm favourite for those trawling the internet in search of a good laugh. Recent claims however have suggested that these furry #felines can serve a much more serious purpose and help with the #learning of #foreign languages.

Following analysis of what helped their members remember information, online learning company #Memrise found an unexpected link between people’s abilities to recall foreign #words and #phrases and the #entertaining cat pictures.

According to the chief operating officer at Memrise Ben Whately, speaking to the #BBC, "We wanted to know what kinds of #visual #mnemonics were most effective at #helping people to learn fast.

"The pattern began to emerge that #pictures of cats always featured disproportionately among the most effective,"

Memrise has backed its claim with research from #Japan, which studied the #connection between #cognition and cuteness.

The company has now developed #Cat Academy, an app that claims to help you learn Spanish by displaying a cute kitty alongside a corresponding phrase.

Still not convinced? “I have to admit we were slightly sceptical to begin with,” said Whately. However, “we're a #scientific group, and data driven — but the data did drive us towards cats.”

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