A recent article from The New York Times discusses research about the role of tests in developing memory. It turns out that tests actually make us smarter by helping to embed information into our memories.
This phenomenon, called the retrieval practice effect, provides insight that could help students to learn more efficiently, thereby improving grades and test scores. If you want to remember information better, test yourself! By testing yourself over newly learned information, you help cement the neurological pathways along which that information is arrayed. Not only will the information remain in your memory longer, it will be easier to access because you’ve already practiced retrieving the information by testing yourself.
Check out the whole article here: How Tests Make Us Smarter.