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Learning Styles. An Introduction to the Ways People Learn. Learning Styles: Topics. Background Learning Style Models Teaching to All Types References. Background. Students have different “learning styles”

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Learning styles

Learning Styles

An Introduction to the Ways People Learn

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Learning styles topics
Learning Styles: Topics

  • Background

  • Learning Style Models

  • Teaching to All Types

  • References

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Background
Background

  • Students have different “learning styles”

  • Learning styles describe how students prefer to and are best able to receive and process information

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Background1
Background

  • Learning styles indicate preferences for:

    • Facts and data

    • Theories and models

    • Visual presentation – pictures and diagrams

    • Verbal presentation – written and spoken

    • Active and interactive learning

    • Introspective and individual learning

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Background2
Background

  • Teaching solely in a manner not well suited to a student’s learning style may cause enough discomfort to interfere with learning

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Background3
Background

However…

  • Teaching only to the preferred modes may result in students lacking the mental agility to reach their potential academically and professionally

  • In other words…they might not adapt well

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Learning style models
Learning Style Models

Three common learning styles models include:

  • Kolb’s Learning Style Model

  • Felder-Silverman Learning Style Model

  • Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Kolb s learning style
Kolb’s Learning Style

  • Type 1 – Concrete, Reflective

  • Type 2 – Abstract, Reflective

  • Type 3 – Abstract, Active

  • Type 4 – Concrete, Active

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Kolb s learning style1
Kolb’s Learning Style

  • Type 1 – Concrete, Reflective

    • Typically asks “Why?”

    • Responds well to explanations of how course material relates to their experience, their interests, and their future careers

    • To be successful with Type 1, the instructor should motivate

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Kolb s learning style2
Kolb’s Learning Style

  • Type 2 – Abstract, Reflective

    • Typically asks “What?”

    • Responds well to information that is presented in an organized, logical fashion and benefits from reflection

    • Instructor should function as an expert

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Kolb s learning style3
Kolb’s Learning Style

  • Type 3 – Abstract, Active

    • Typically asks “How?”

    • Responds well to working actively on well-defined tasks and by trial-and-error in an environment that allows them to fail safely

    • Instructor should function as a coach by providing guided practice and feedback.

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Kolb s learning style4
Kolb’s Learning Style

  • Type 4 – Concrete, Active

    • Typically asks “What if?”

    • Prefers to apply course material in new situations to solve real problems.

    • Instructor should stay out of the way to let students discover things on their own.

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Felder silverman
Felder-Silverman

  • Sensing/Intuitive

  • Visual/Verbal

  • Inductive/Deductive

  • Active/Reflective

  • Sequential/Global

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Felder silverman1
Felder-Silverman

  • Sensing

    • Concrete, Practical

    • Oriented toward facts and procedures

  • Intuitive

    • Conceptual, Innovative

    • Oriented toward theories and meanings

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Felder silverman2
Felder-Silverman

  • Visual

    • Prefer visual representations of material

    • Pictures, Diagrams, Flow charts

  • Verbal

    • Prefer written and spoken explanations

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Felder silverman3
Felder-Silverman

  • Inductive

    • Prefer presentations that proceed from the specific to the general

  • Deductive

    • Prefer presentations that go from general to the specific

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Felder silverman4
Felder-Silverman

  • Active

    • Learn by trying things out

    • Prefer working with others

  • Reflective

    • Learn by thinking things through

    • Prefer working alone

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Felder silverman5
Felder-Silverman

  • Sequential

    • Linear, Orderly

    • Learn in small incremental steps

  • Global

    • Holistic, Systems thinkers

    • Learn in large leaps

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Myers briggs
Myers-Briggs

  • Extraverts/Introverts

  • Sensors/Intuitors

  • Thinkers/Feelers

  • Judgers/Perceivers

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Myers briggs1
Myers-Briggs

  • Extraverts

    • Like to try things out

    • Focus on the outer world of people

  • Introverts

    • Think things through

    • Focus on the inner world of ideas

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Myers briggs2
Myers-Briggs

  • Sensors

    • Practical

    • Detail-oriented

    • Focus on facts and procedures

  • Intuitors

    • Imaginative

    • Concept-oriented

    • Focus on meanings and possibilities

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Myers briggs3
Myers-Briggs

  • Thinkers

    • Skeptical

    • Tend to make decisions based on logic and rules

  • Feelers

    • Appreciative

    • Tend to make decisions based on personal and humanistic considerations

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Myers briggs4
Myers-Briggs

  • Judgers

    • Set and follow agendas

    • Seek closure even with incomplete data

  • Perceivers

    • Adapt to changing circumstances

    • Resist closure to obtain more data

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Teaching to all types
Teaching to All Types

Appealing to a wide array of learning styles can be achieved, based on the Felder-Silverman model, by:

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Teaching to all types1
Teaching to All Types

  • Using plots, graphics, and demonstrations along with oral and written explanations (visual/verbal)

  • Balancing concrete information such as experimental results with conceptual information like theories and models (sensing/intuitive)

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Teaching to all types2
Teaching to All Types

  • Demonstrating the logical flow of material but also making connections to other classes, topics, and everyday experiences (sequential/global)

  • Encouraging or requiring cooperative learning (all learning styles)

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


Teaching to all types3
Teaching to All Types

  • Asking students to explain a general principle given only experimental observations (inductive)

  • Providing in class time for students to consider the material presented as well as for active participation (reflective/active)

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


References
References

  • Matters of Style, Felder, Richard, ASEE Prism, 6(4), 18-23, December 1996

  • http://www.ncsu.edu/felder-public/

Gateway Engineering Education Coalition


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