Editor’s Note: The concept of learning styles is controversial. The views expressed in this article are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of this website.
By Cindy Boesel
A clash of learning styles can be one of the biggest setbacks in the learning process. That’s why it is important to discover the learning style that suits you the most. People are different, and every one of us requires a different kind of support, special attention to certain things or some alone time to acquire maximum information. The sooner you discover your natural learning predispositions, the better chance you have to successfully change your learning techniques. Let’s take a closer look at different learning styles and methods to recognize your preferences.
We distinguish seven major learning styles. Keep on reading to find out how to differentiate between them.
The use of images, pictures, and colors accelerates the process of learning. Visual learners are keen on drawing, playing with Legos, or solving jigsaw puzzles. Colorful teaching supplies and board games have proven to be the most effective materials for visual learners.
The method in which people learn by listening is strongly connected with excellent memory. People who prefer this technique easily hear even the smallest phonetic differences between similar words; therefore they are great at remembering dates, names, and trivia.
People who prefer the linguistic method draw satisfaction from playing with words; they enjoy reading and writing. Similarly to the auditory style, verbal learners find pleasure in word games and role-playing exercises. They often possess impressive knowledge of words and word formation processes. It is easy for them to learn, remember and use newly acquired material.
Students who prefer the kinesthetic learning style learn by movement, experimentation, using the sense of touch and carrying out physical activities. These learners may get overwhelmed when a task takes too long or requires too much concentration. It is best to set short-term goals and divide complicated projects into several tasks that can be done step by step. It is said that only 10% of the population prefer tactile learning.
Logical learners enjoy solving quizzes and riddles. They tend to group and classify information to establish easy-to-remember patterns and connections. This style is often referred to as ‘mathematical’, as the learners are great with numbers and excel in performing complex calculations. They are also systematic and methodical.
If you are a social learner you prefer learning in a group and solving problems with other people. Social learners are most productive when they can draw inspiration from others. This method is recommended for extroverts.
On the other hand, if you prefer to work alone and spend as much time as you need to get to the core of the issue, you are most probably a solitary learner. People opting for this method are independent individuals who value autonomy and personal space.
Time to choose
Now, it’s time for some soul-searching. The first thing to do is to ask yourself several questions that will help determine which learning style suits you the most. Ask if you like listening to different sounds when learning. Do you prefer to write things down and memorize them? Are you an active type, or do you need complete independence while learning? You don’t have to limit yourself to just one learning style – feel free to arrange a personal combination that will work best for you. If answering the questions becomes too difficult, you can always try free online quizzes, like Multiple Intelligences Self Assessment or The VARK Questionnaire. Remember that there are no right or wrong answers!
I hope this article will help you determine your personal learning style and boost your learning experience.
Cindy Boesel works at BizStats.co.uk. She is a lifelong learner interested in the British startup scene and the ways mobile is changing business globally.
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