Scent as a Memory Aid

Scent as a Memory Aid


There’s a study in the journal Science (abstract here) that found that recent declarative memories (facts and experiences) were better recalled when subjects were cued with a scent during the memorization process and again during slow wave sleep. Procedural memories, such as learning to ride a bike, were not improved by the scent cues.

I’m curious how this could be used as a study aid, especially for preparing for tests or presentations, situations where a person might typically sleep immediately after a memorization session. Imagine a desktop device that periodically emits an intense scent while you study, then sits by your bedside and repeats the burst of scent when it detects the onset of slow wave sleep -[via] Link.