London, Jan 21 (Agencies): Want your children to learn better? Then, ensure that they should write down important topics on paper instead of typing them on a computer.

Researchers at the University of Stavanger, Norway, found that children or students who write by hand learn better than those who type.

The process of putting pen to paper and reading from a book seems to imprint knowledge in the brain in a better way than using a keyboard and computer screen, they said.

Reading and writing, according to them, involves a number of senses and when writing by hand our brain receives feedback from our muscles and finger tips, the Telegraph reported.

These kinds of feedback are stronger than those we receive when touching and typing on a keyboard and strengthens the learning mechanism. It also takes more mental effort and time to write by hand and so this is thought to also help imprint memories, they said.

According to study author Prof Anne Mangen, the findings shown different parts of the brain are stimulated by reading and writing.

Since writing by hand takes longer than typing on a keyboard the temporal aspect of the brain which is involved in language may also influence the learning process, she said.

For their study, Prof Mangen and her team carried out an experiment involving two groups of adults, in which the participants were assigned the task of having to learn to write in an unknown alphabet, consisting of approximately twenty letters.

One group was taught to write by hand, while the other was using a keyboard.

Three and six weeks into the experiment, participants' recollection of these letters, as well as their rapidity in distinguishing right and reversed letters, were tested.
It was found that those who had learned the letters by handwriting came out best in all tests.

Furthermore, brain scans indicated an activation of the Broca's area -- a region of brain linked to speech production-- within this group.

Among those who had learned by typing on keyboards, there was little or no activation of this area.
Prof Mangen said: "The sensorimotor component forms an integral part of training for beginners, and in special education for people with learning difficulties.

"But there is little awareness and understanding of the importance of handwriting to the learning process, beyond that of writing itself."

Meanwhile research suggests that practice really does make perfect in that repeated repetition changes the structure of the brain.

The new research was published in the journal Advances in Haptics.