Learning styles Essay
The reason for doing this report is to try and discover which is my best and worst way to learn and then to come up with a strategy for improving my ability to learn. The first thing that I need to do is research what different learning styles there is, after I have done this I can determine what are my preferred learning styles.
Types of Learning Styles
After doing some research I have discovered that there are four main ways of learning. For each of these four ways there is a continuum, this continuum determines which particular style somebody may prefer.
The first continuum of learning is Active and Reflective, this style is to do with the way in which a person may go about his/her learning.
Active learners tend to retain and understand information best by doing something active with it, discussing or applying it in a hand’s on way. Reflective learners prefer to think about it quietly first.
The second continuum of learning is Sensing and Intuitive, this style is to do with the information that a person has to learn. Sensing learners often prefer to learn and memorise facts but intuitive learners prefer to learn around new ideas and concepts.
The third continuum of learning is Visual and Verbal, this style is to do with the way in which the information is presented. Visual learners remember best what they see e.
g. pictures, diagrams, flow charts, time lines, films, and demonstrations. Verbal learners get more out of words including written and spoken explanations.
The fourth and final continuum of learning is Sequential and Global. This style is to do with the way in which learners put together the information they have been given. Sequential learners tend to gain understanding in linear steps, with each step following logically from the previous one.
Global learners tend to learn in large jumps, absorbing material almost randomly without seeing connections, and then suddenly ;getting it.;
To be an effective learner you need to be able to learn in every single way depending on the way in which the information is presented or the environment in which you are learning etc. This is why the best learners have balanced learning styles and therefore can adapt the way they learn.
My Learning Style Preferences are
To find out my learning style preferences I took part in a on-line test (http://www.crc4mse.org/ILS/self_test.
html) which asks a series of questions and then gives you a score for each one of the four learning continuum’s. For three of the continuums I was biased towards one particular style, these are active, visual and global. This would indicate that I learn best when I can get involved and try things out. It also indicates that I absorb information best when it is presented visually in things such as diagrams, tables, graphs etc. furthermore, the test showed is that I learn best if I get an overview of the whole topic before I start concentrating on the smaller details. The final thing that this test points out is that I’m neither sensing nor intuitive.
Due to this I am able to learn the facts surrounding a subject but I am also able to grasp theories and ideas. I absolutely agree with the results of this test and would say it is a fair judgement on my learning preferences.
My Learning Style Weaknesses are
As discussed before the best learners have a balanced learning style and therefore my greatest weakness is that I don’t have the ability to adapt my learning style to all situations. Because of this I may miss out on some vital information because it isn’t presented in a format that I am totally comfortable with. Even though I am a good learner when I learn actively I don’t learn as well when there is nothing practical for me to take part in, in order to re-enforce the things that I have learnt. I also find it difficult to absorb information when it is not presented in a visual format.
Another weakness of mine is that in some case’s I need to have an overall understanding of a subject before I appreciate the smaller details. This is a weakness because sometimes it can over complicate a topic if I .