Tricks to Remember Countries

Color coding is an effecitve way to memorize countries.

Knowing all of the countries in the world is impressive for anyone, but it's very important if you work in a firm that deals with international matters. Though the best way to remember countries is to simply study country locations and names using a map, different tricks can help you make that study more effective.

1 Visual Tricks

If you're a visual learner, it will be easiest for you to memorize country names by seeing them. Start by taking the globe one continent at a time. Memorize that continent's shape and the shapes of each of the countries located within it. Next, write the names of the continents on a blank map. Try to associate each content name with its shape. Focus not only the name sounds, but on the shape of both the country and its name. After studying your completed map, test yourself on a blank map, then compare it with the competed one. Continue practicing for each continent until you believe you have memorized each country's name.

2 Aural Tricks

If you learn by listening, you can try to come up with a mnemonic device in which you associate the sounds of the country's name with the sounds of its location. For instance, you might remember that "Niger is in the Northwest." You can also try singing the country names, as Memorization Tips.Com suggests, or "chunking," remembering country names in groups. When "chunking," say the names out loud. For instance, repeat all the names of countries in Northwest Africa until you believe you've memorized them. Next, memorize the "chunk" of Northeast Africa.

3 Tangible Tricks

Kinesthetic learners, or those who learn by doing, will memorize country names faster if they're doing something tangible as they memorize. Though you may have thought coloring maps in Geography class was a waste of time, coloring can help you memorize as a kinesthetic learner. This is also a good technique for visual learners, who may associate the colors they gave to the countries with their names, remembering where they are an the map. Assembling country map and globe puzzles with names on each country's piece can also help you memorize by doing.

4 Personal Experience or Association Tricks

Although it is a much more abstract method of memorization, you can try associating a personal experience or association with each location on the map. For instance, if you're trying to remember European country names, consider saying the names of each country and an association you have with that country as you point to its location on a map. For example: "Italy, pizza." When you test yourself on a blank map, you might remember the name of the association but not the country. This may jog your memory so you can remember the country name.

Miranda Morley is an educator, business consultant and owner of a copywriting/social-media management company. Her work has been featured in the "Boston Literary Magazine," "Subversify Magazine" and "American Builder's Quarterly." Morley has a B.A. in English, political science and international relations. She is completing her M.A. in rhetoric and composition from Purdue University Calumet.