Understanding Different Learning Styles

Understanding different learning styles is not difficult with this information at hand. If you are an educator, you know that applying that knowledge in a classroom of 30 students is sometimes a challenge.

If you are a parent or a student, knowing the three main types of learning styles will help with your own and your child’s learning.

Find information on setting personal goals here.

Three Types of Learning Styles

1. Auditory 

Auditory learners use their sense of hearing and learn best by listening. They prefer to have information explained. They often like listening to music while they are learning. But, they need quiet places to study. They learn quite well from a teacher talking at the front of the classroom.

2. Visual 

Visual Learners use their sense of sight and learn best by viewing diagrams, charts, graphics and demonstrations. But they may have difficulty focusing while listening to an explanation. 

3.  Kinesthetic 

Kinesthetic learners use their sense of touch and movement to process information. They learn best by doing. They might take in more information while walking around. Writing information can improve their retention.

Understanding Different Learning Styles Improves Understanding

Most of us use all three learning styles. The lucky learner has a balance of these. Many people who are visual, kinesthetic learners fare best in an active, project-based learning environment.

How to Find a Learning Styles Balance

Cognitive skills are the foundational building blocks of understanding different learning styles. 

What are cognitive skills? 

Cognitive skills are:

  1. attention; 
  2. memory; 
  3. logic and reasoning; 
  4. auditory and visual processing;
  5. cognitive processing speed. 

These can be learned and reinforced.

1. The three types of attention are: sustained, or the ability to keep focused on a task, selective and divided or multi-tasking.

2. Memory is the ability to store and recall information. There are two types of memory: long-term and short-term.  

3. Logic and Reasoning: This is the ability to reason, form concepts, and solve problems using unfamiliar information or unusual procedures. 

People with logic and reasoning challenges will probably struggle with word math problems and other abstract learning. If you find yourself, your child or student saying: "I don't get this" or "What should I do first?" then working on logic and reasoning skills can help. 

4. Auditory Processing is the ability to analyze, blend, and segment sounds. This cognitive skill is necessary for reading and spelling and is needed for learning to read. 

   Visual Processing is the ability to perceive, analyze, and think in visual images or to create a picture of words or concepts in your mind. People with visual processing challenges might have problems  following instructions, reading maps, doing word math problems, and understanding. 

5. Processing Speed is he ability to think quickly and accurately while concentrating. Struggles with processing speed makes homework difficult and getting simple tasks done difficult.

By focusing on cognitive skill development, understanding different learning styles becomes easier. Any brain work that enhances memory and understanding will improve learning. The best bet is a little work at a time.

Getting discouraged and frustrated will impede progress, especially for people with learning disabilities. Boost your own, your child's and your students' self esteem by understanding different learning styles.

For more information on this topic, have a look at Visual Learning Style, Auditory Learning Style and Kinesthetic Learning Style.

Understanding Different
Learning Styles Has Benefits

We are all unique learners in this complex process of processing information. If you are lucky you will understands your style and use tools and techniques to improve your understanding. There are many benefits to discovering how you process information best. 

The Academic, Personal and Professional Advantages for Understanding Different Learning Styles

Academic Advantages

  • Maximizes learning potential.
  • Enhances success in school, college, university.
  • Gives customized techniques for better test and exam scores.
  • Allows for learning “your way”  with your own best strategies.
  • Reduces stress and frustration.
  • Extends your current learning and studying strategies.

Personal Advantages

  • Increases self esteem and self-confidence.
  • Improves self-image.
  • Shows how to best use your brain.
  • Gives insight into your strengths, challenges and habits.
  • Helps you to enjoy the learning process.
  • Inspires curiosity and motivation for lifelong learning.
  • Shows you how to take advantage of your natural skills.

Professional Advantages

  • Keeps you professionally current.
  • Gives you a competitive edge.
  • Helps with effective team management.
  • Helps with delivery of effective presentations to diverse audiences.
  • Improves your sales skills.
  • Helps encourage cooperation among colleagues.
  • Translates your learning power into earning power.

Understanding learning styles builds self esteem and confidence. These in turn lead to success in life and are part of our life long journey to maturity and greater self awareness.

Go to Self Esteem Home Page 

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