There are lots of different ways to learn! Knowing how a student learns best means that information can be better absorbed and applied in academic contexts. It can hugely improve revision technique and exam results. It all comes down to how each person is made differently and therefore absorbs information differently.
So, what are some of these learning styles? Here we will be talking about the main four. As you read over, have a think about how these might resonate with you or your child.
Aural or Auditory Learners
Auditory learners absorb information best when is it presented vocally – typically by a teacher, lecturer or tutor. It can also be helpful for an auditory learner to read aloud to himself or herself to help retain and better understand course materials.
The process of talking over class work and course matter is also vitally important as it gives them a chance to externally process the information and therefore better understand it. As such, they do well in group conversation activities and having someone to bounce the information off – such as a peer or private tutor. One of the ways this can apply to improving revision technique is to make up fun rhymes to recall information needed for an assessment or exam.
A visual learner learns best when information is presented…you guessed it…visually! They tend to be holistic leaners and absorb information best when it is presented as a whole rather than in small bits. Examples of learning techniques that are best for visual learners would be the use of graphs, charts and diagrams. In terms of applying this to a student’s study technique and revision approach, things like mind mapping, spider diagrams and flow charts can be extremely useful. Putting these on bedroom walls or around the house so they can be glanced at in passing can be a great idea. These can help students get their heads around the big picture and recall it more easily.
This type of learner work best with the written word – by being given handouts and working form textbooks and self-lead or guided online research. They respond very well to information presented in PowerPoint form. It can be helpful for these learners to practice condensing their own notes as they can absorb information well while condensing and reformatting it.
They should take detailed notes in class, as these will be especially helpful for them to refer back to later on. In terms of revision application, writing out detailed revision notes is very helpful and also repeatedly reading over textbook and course materials in detail to take it in.
These learners are, by nature, interactive and often do very well in lab-based situations where they are directly putting into practice what they are learning. They tend to use all the senses when engaging with education. Kinaesthetic leaners can find it hard learning in a typical manner expected in educational settings as few subjects are interactive in the way that engages them best. Tools such as flash cards can be very helpful as it means than less hands-on subjects such as English and Maths can still become interactive though this method.
Most learners will have a strong preference for one learning style but not fit the mould completely and will often have a second or third preferred style.
Having knowledge of these styles is an important first step in discovering how you or your child learns best and can therefore achieve maximum academic success.
If you would like help identifying and honing your leaning styles this is something a private tutor can help with. At Bristol Tutors ltd we are on hand to help with this process, wherever you currently may be on your educational journey!