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Learning Styles. The Citadel Academic Support Center 2010. Which Is Best For You?. How Do You Learn?. Do you prefer to work in study groups or on your own?. Do you like to learn by doing something?. Do you learn by memorizing facts and details?.
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Learning Styles The Citadel Academic Support Center 2010
How Do You Learn? Do you prefer to work in study groups or on your own? Do you like to learn by doing something? Do you learn by memorizing facts and details? Do you like to learn by sitting back listening and thinking? Do you learn best by seeing pictures, graphs and diagrams? Do you enjoy reading? Do you retain what you have read? Do you enjoy lectures? Do you retain information from lectures?
Active vs. Reflective Learning Styles
Active Learners • Active Learners tend to retain and understand information best by doing something active with it. • They like to “try it out and see how it works” by discussing, applying or explaining the topic or concept to others • They like to work in study groups and discuss concepts with others • Lecture Classes where they sit and do nothing but take notes are particularly difficult for them.
Reflective Learners • Reflective Learners prefer to listen to information and concepts and then gain understanding by thinking about it quietly • They tend to like to work alone where they can think through concepts • While lecture style classes can be painful for everyone, reflective learners do much better in them then active learners
Sensing vs. Intuitive Learning Styles
Sensing Learners • Sensing learners like to learn and memorize facts and details. • They like to solve problems using well established logical methods • They do not like to be tested on material that was not explained in detail in class. • They have difficulty understanding abstract concepts • They work slowly and are practical. • They generally check the details of their work carefully. • They do not like courses where they cannot see the real world applications of what they are learning
Intuitive Learners • Intuitive Learners like to look for relationships and possibilities in and between the concepts and facts they study • They like innovation and dislike repetition • They do not mind being tested on material only tangentially covered in class • They tend not to struggle with abstract concepts • They tend to work quickly through task by trying to find faster innovative ways of doing things • They do not like course that require a lot of memorization of facts and concepts
Verbal vs. Visual Learning Styles
Verbal Learners • Verbal learners like to learn from words • They understand concepts best when given written or spoken explanations • They like and prefer to absorb information and concepts explained in books • Most people are not Verbal learners, but the format of most college classes favors verbal learners
Visual Learners • Visual Learners retain best things that they can see. • They like to learn from visual material like diagrams, flow charts, time lines, and videos • Most people are visual learners • Most college classes are not geared towards visual learning, but that is changing (with PowerPoint).
Global vs. Sequential Learning Styles
Sequential Learners • Sequential Learners gain understanding through linear steps • They tend to understand concepts by following logical steps from one stage to the next. • They like to work slowly, following logical stepwise paths to solve problems because they gain understanding through the process of taking all the steps to find the solution.
Global Learners • Global Learners tend to learn in huge jumps, absorbing material almost randomly without seeing connections, and then suddenly “getting it.” • They may be able to solve complex problems quickly, but cannot explain the steps or process by which they did it. • Put simply, they grasp the big picture first, but struggle with details.
The Great Trap • Everyone gets confused by new concepts, so do not assume that because you have been confused you are a global learner • Even if Sequential Learners do not understand the larger concept, they generally can understand details and apply them in some way. • Global learners struggle with details even after they solve a problem
The Learning Styles Index Understanding Your Results and Your Learning Style
Active Learners • Create applications or problem solving activities while studying. (i.e. study guides with questions) • Study in groups where you can ask one another questions about the material. It forces you to formula answers to one another
Reflective Learners • Stop periodically when you are reading to think about, and digest what you have read. • Right out summaries of your reading and class notes to help you organize your thoughts. • When Studying try to work alone and in a quiet place.
Sensing Learners • If you are in class where most of the material is abstract or theoretical… • Ask the professor specific examples of concepts and procedures. • Ask about the practical application of the concept or theory
Intuitive Learners • Try to memorize facts and details by thinking about connections between them. • Take the time to read the whole question on test and quizzes. Take care to answer all parts of the question • Try to take extra care to check your work because intuitive learners tend to be impatient with details.
Verbal Learners • Verbal learners can help themselves by writing out summaries and outlines of course material in their own words. • Another way verbal learners can help one another is to have small group discussions amongst one another about course material. Explaining things to classmates will make help to retain and understand information.
Visual Learners • Visual Learners should try and find visual representations of the course material (i.e. diagrams, pictures, or flow charts) • If the professor uses PowerPoint, ask them for the slides. • If the are videos or CD-ROMS on the material try and get them. • Concept Maps which visually link ideas can be very helpful.
Sequential Learners • If you have an instructor who jumps around from topic to topic or skips steps, You should ask them to fill in the blanks for you. If they do not then consult other references • When studying take the time to outline material from your reading and lectures in a logical order.
Global Learners • Try not to study daily in short blocks of time. Try and immerse yourself in the material for long periods of time. • Try to skim over the whole chapter of a text to get an overview before trying to study a particular section in depth. • Try to relate subjects to things that you already know and look for ways to connect it to other topics and disciplines.
References • Felder Richard M. and Barbara A. Soloman. “Learning Styles and Strategies.” North Carolina State University, 2009. June 1, 2009. <http://www4.ncsu.edu/unity/lockers/users/f/felder/public/ILSdir/styles.htm>.