Am I hitting “hard” too often?

Hi everyone! My little dilemma is regarding Anki as a whole, not specifically the iPad version, so I thought I’d post here. If not acceptable I will take the post down right away.

When answering a card, if I have a small slip up, for example jumping to an incorrect answer without thinking properly, or when missing a small part of the answer I tend to hit “hard”. In my mind I could have gotten the answer correctly had I not been so careless. Is this wrong to do? And when should I be using “hard” really, if at all?

I always hear that “hard” should be used as sparingly as “easy”, and that using “hard” too often could lead to ease hell. But wouldn’t hitting “again” also lead to ease hell as they both lower a card’s ease?

From the photo (young cards):
Again: 197 times
Hard: 224 times
Good: 4618 times
Easy: 43 times

My average ease is 247%

Doesn’t this depend dramatically on what kind of cards you study?

For example if you study basic and reverse cards, it makes more sense to hit easy and hard because you would see the other side too, no?

I hit easy a lot more than you I think:

my average easy is 257%

Thanks for the reply, what you said makes total sense! I am studying a med school deck called “Anking”. There most of the cards are of the cloze type unfortunately. For reference, I use Anking’s settings too of 25m 1d, and a graduating interval of 3 days.

It’s just hard for me to grasp why hitting “hard” can increase the workload and possibly lead to ease hell, while “again” does not, when both in fact do permanently reduce a card’s ease.

Hard would increase the workload in the case you forget the card and then have to hit again in the future because the time you studied it now would be wasted.

It’s a pretty silly view considering how little time it takes to study a single card, considering that there is a chance you remember the card.

I often found myself remembering things I accidentally pressed good or easy on that i had actually forgotten and yet didn’t bother rescheduling the card.

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That’s not true, both can led to ease hell if you use the wrong settings and / or never use the “Easy” button. Don’t be afraid to use the “Hard” button and remember that you can (and should) press “Easy” on easy cards!

Thank you! That makes sense. I guess I’ve always seen people using this deck having their “again” count being almost double their “hard” count and thought I’m setting myself up for disaster some way.

That being said, what do you think of the settings I use? I do hit “easy” when I can. But should I continue hitting “hard” when making a silly mistake, and “again” when I really don’t know the answer? Or should I be a bit more strict when hitting “hard” from now on?

Probably your daily limits are a little bit unrealistic, unless you have 12 hours / day to study :smiley:

Think about that: if you have 100 new cards / day and, in practice, no review limit:

  • Today you’ll have 100 new cards.
  • Tomorrow you’ll have 100 new cards + 100 review cards.
  • The day after tomorrow you’ll have 100 new cards + 200 review cards.
  • […]
  • In a couple of weeks you’ll probably have 100 new cards + 1000 review cards, which in most cases is A LOT.

Other than that, I don’t see anything wrong in your deck options, if it works for you, for the kind of material you’re learning, and for your way of learning, then it’s OK.

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Hi, I’m using Anking too. I think pressing either “Hard” or “Again” can lead to ease hell if you press them on cards that you know. What I do is just using “Good” for cards I remember & “Again” for cards I miss. I never use “Hard” or “Easy” because I want to finish my reviews rapidly without thinking if I would choose between “Again” & “Hard” or “Good” & “Easy”.

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