Read these 10 Different Learning Styles Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Homework tips and hundreds of other topics.
You learn by touching and doing. Kinesthetic Learners
need to be active and take frequent breaks
speak with their hands and with gestures
remember what was done, but have difficulty recalling what was said or seen
find reasons to tinker or move when bored
rely on what they can directly experience or perform
activities such as cooking, construction, engineering and art help them perceive and learn
enjoy field trips and tasks that involve manipulating materials
sit near the door or someplace else where they can easily get up and move around
are uncomfortable in classrooms where they lack opportunities for hands-on experience
communicate by touching and appreciate physically expressed encouragement, such as a pat on the back
You learn best when information is presented auditory in an oral language format. In a classroom setting, you benefit from listening to lecture and participating in group discussions. You also benefit from obtaining information from audio tape. When trying to remember something, you can often "hear" the way someone told you the information, or the way you previously repeated it out loud. You learn best when interacting with others in a listening/speaking exchange .
Join a study group to assist you in learning course material. Or, work with a "study buddy" on an ongoing basis to review key information and prepare for exams.
When studying by yourself, talk out loud to aid recall. Get yourself in a room where you won't be bothering anyone and read your notes and textbook out loud.
Tape record your lectures. Use the 'pause' button to avoid taping irrelevant information. Use a tape recorder equipped with a 3-digit counter. At the beginning of each lecture, set your counter to '000.' If a concept discussed during lecture seems particu larly confusing, glance at the counter number and jot it down in your notes. Later, you can fast forward to that number to review the material that confused you during lecture. Making use of a counter and pause button while tape recording allows you to av oid the tedious task of having to listen to hours and hours of lecture tape.
Use audio tapes such as commercial books on tape to aid recall. Or, create your own audio tapes by reading notes and textbook information into a tape recorder. When preparing for an exam, review the tapes on your car tape player or on a "Walkman" player w henever you can.
When learning mathematical or technical information, "talk your way" through the new information. State the problem in your own words. Reason through solutions to problems by talking out loud to yourself or with a study partner. To learn a sequence of ste ps, write them out in sentence form and read them out loud.
To aid recall, make use of "color coding" when studying new information in your textbook or notes. Using highlighter pens, highlight different kinds of information in contrasting colors.
Write out sentences and phrases that summarize key information obtained from your textbook and lecture.
Make flashcards of vocabulary words and concepts that need to be memorized. Use highlighter pens to emphasize key points on the cards. Limit the amount of information per card so your mind can take a mental "picture" of the information.
When learning information presented in diagrams or illustrations, write out explanations for the information.
When learning mathematical or technical information, write out in sentences and key phrases your understanding of the material. When a problem involves a sequence of steps, write out in detail how to do each step.
Make use of computer word processing. Copy key information from your notes and textbook into a computer. Use the print-outs for visual review.
Before an exam, make yourself visual reminders of information that must be memorized. Make "stick it" notes containing key words and concepts and place them in highly visible places --on your mirror, notebook, car dashboard, etc..
You learn by seeing and looking. Visual Learners
take numerous detailed notes
tend to sit in the front
are usually neat and clean
often close their eyes to visualize or remember something
find something to watch if they are bored
like to see what they are learning
benefit from illustrations and presentations that use color
are attracted to written or spoken language rich in imagery
prefer stimuli to be isolated from auditory and kinesthetic distraction
find passive surroundings ideal
You learn best when physically engaged in a "hands on" activity. In the classroom, you benefit from a lab setting where you can man ipulate materials to learn new information. You learn best when you can be physically active in the learning environment. You benefit from instructors who encourage in-class demonstrations, "hands on" student learning experiences, and field work outside t he classroom.
To help you stay focused on class lecture, sit near the front of the room and take notes throughout the class period. Don't worry about correct spelling or writing in complete sentences. Jot down key words and draw pictures or make charts to help you reme mber the information you are hearing.
When studying, walk back and forth with textbook, notes, or flashcards in hand and read the information out loud.
Think of ways to make your learning tangible, i.e. something you can put your hands on. For example, make a model that illustrates a key concept. Spend extra time in a lab setting to learn an important procedure. Spend time in the field (e.g. a museum, hi storical site, or job site) to gain first-hand experience of your subject matter.
To learn a sequence of steps, make 3'x 5' flashcards for each step. Arrange the cards on a table top to represent the correct sequence. Put words, symbols, or pictures on your flashcards -- anything that helps you remember the information. Use highlighter pens in contrasting colors to emphasize important points. Limit the amount of information per card to aid recall. Practice putting the cards in order until the sequence becomes automatic.
When reviewing new information, copy key points onto a chalkboard, easel board, or other large writing surface.
Make use of the computer to reinforce learning through the sense of touch. Using word processing software, copy essential information from your notes and textbook. Use graphics, tables, and spreadsheets to further organize material that must be learned.
Listen to audio tapes on a Walkman tape player while exercising. Make your own tapes containing important course information.
Your learning style is the way you prefer to learn. It doesn't have anything to do with how intelligent you are or what skills you have learned. It has to do with how your brain works most efficiently to learn new information. Your learning style has been with you since you were born.
There's no such thing as a "good" learning style or a "bad" learning style. Success comes with many different learning styles. There is no "right" approach to learning. We all have our own particular way of learning new information. The important thing is to be aware of the nature of your learning style. If you are aware of how your brain best learns, you have a better chance of studying in a way that will pay off when it's time to take that dreaded exam.
To get you started thinking about your learning style, think about the way in which you remember a phone number. Do you see, in your mind's eye, how the numbers look on the phone? Or can you "see" the number on that piece of paper, picturing it exactly as you wrote it down? You might be a Visual Learner. Or, perhaps you can "hear" the number in the way that someone recited it to you. In this case, you might be an Auditory Learner. If you "let your fingers do the walking" on the phone, i.e. your fingers dial the number without looking at the phone, you may be a Tactile/ Kinesthetic Learner.
This way of looking at learning style uses the different channels of perception (seeing, hearing, touching/moving) as its model. This is a somewhat simplistic view of a very complicated subject (the human brain). However, looking at learning style from a perceptual point of view is a useful place to begin.
While there is no "good" or "bad" learning style, there can be a good or bad match between the way you best learn and the way a particular course is taught. Suppose you are a Visual Learner enrolled in a traditional lecture course. You feel that the instructor drones on for hours and you can't pay attention or stay interested in the class. There's a mismatch here between your learning style and the instructional environment of the class. As soon as you understand this mismatch, you can find ways to adapt your style to ensure your success in the class. You might start tape recording the lectures so that you don't have to worry about missing important information. You might decide to draw diagrams that illustrate the ideas being presented in lecture. You might go to the Media Center and check out a video to help provide some additional information on course material you're not sure about. What you're doing is developing learning strategies that work for you because they are based on your knowledge of your own learning style.
You learn by hearing and listening. Auditory Learners
sit where they can hear but needn't pay attention to what is happening in front
may not coordinate colors or clothes, but can explain why they are wearing what they are wearing and why
hum or talk to themselves or others when bored
acquire knowledge by reading aloud
remember by verbalizing lessons to themselves (if they don't they have difficulty reading maps or diagrams or handling conceptual assignments like mathematics).