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Learning Styles B. Amirheidari, PharmD, PhD. Apr 2011, KMU.

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1 Learning Styles B. Amirheidari, PharmD, PhD. Apr 2011, KMU

2 A Chinese Proverb I hear...and I forget I see...and I remember I do...and I understand

3 Introduction to learning styles A complex and ongoing field of research A wide range of models to characterise Results adopted by many organisations

4 History and scope Learning styles research began in 1960s By 2006 over 650 books published on learning styles Over 4500 articles in scholarly publications 26,000 websites

5 Definition of Learning Styles Specified patterns of behavior according to which the individual approaches a learning experience A way in which the individual takes in new information and develops new skills The process by which an individual retains new information or skills (Sarasin, L.C, 2006)

6 Definitions (Contd.) The manner in which individuals choose, or are inclined to approach, a learning situation (Cassidy, 2004) The way an individual perceives, organizes, processes, and remembers information (Beebe, Mottet, Roach, 2004)

7 Goals Understand our own learning style Understand our students’ learning styles Apply to our teaching methodology Accommodate students’ differences Become better teachers

8 Does brain matter? Ancient Egyptians believed the heart was the center of intelligence and emotion They thought so little of the brain that during mummification, they removed the brain entirely from bodies

9 Brain Hemispheres Right Reasoning Logical Mathematical Verbal Left Mystical Musical Creative Visual-pictorial

10 Do we teach to both sides? What teaching methods do we use for –a student who is left brain dominant? –a student who is right brain dominant?

11 1. Try to memorize the items below 2. Write down the items you remember

12 Memorize these letters A X Q Write down the letters you remember Z Z G K J E Write down the letters you remember K W O F P A D S M Write down the letters you remember M A J H I Y K O W L P Q Write down the letters you remember A K A B K I P F I M I N F P W Write down the letters you remember

13 Please Check your answers! A X Q Z Z G K J E K W O F P A D S M M A J H I Y K O W L P Q A K A B K I P F I M I N F P W

14 Models and terms A huge range of words is employed A wide range of models is applied

15 So Many Words!  convergers versus divergers  verbalisers versus imagers  holists versus serialists  deep versus surface learning  activists versus reflectors  pragmatists versus theorists  adaptors versus innovators  assimilators versus explorers  field dependent versus field independent  globalists versus analysts  assimilators versus accommodators  imaginative versus analytic learners  non-committers versus plungers  common-sense versus dynamic learners  concrete versus abstract learners  random versus sequential learners  initiators versus reasoners  intuitionists versus analysts  extroverts versus introverts  sensing versus intuition  thinking versus feeling  judging versus perceiving  left brainers versus right brainers  meaning-directed versus undirected  theorists versus humanitarians  activists versus theorists  pragmatists versus reflectors  organisers versus innovators  lefts/analytics/inductives/successive processors versus rights/globals/deductives/  simultaneous processors  executive, hierarchic, conservative versus legislative,  anarchic, liberal

16 Models: 1. Honey and Mumford (1982) Distinguished b/w 4 preferred styles:  Activist  Reflector  Theorist  Pragmatist

17 Honey and Mumford model (1.1) Activists learn best from activities in which there are: New experiences and challenges Short ‘here and now’ tasks including teamwork and problem-solving Excitement, change and variety ‘High visibility’ tasks e.g. Leading roles

18 Honey and Mumford model (1.2) Reflectors learn best from activities where they: Are allowed or encouraged to watch/think/ponder on activities Have time to think before acting Can carry out careful, detailed research Have time to review their learning Don’t have pressure and tight deadlines

19 Honey and Mumford model (1.3) Theorists learn best from activities where: What is offered is part of a system, model or theory They can explore the interrelationships between ideas, events and situations They are asked to analyse and evaluate, then generalise They can question basic assumptions or logic

20 Honey and Mumford model (1.4) Pragmatists learn best from activities if: There’s an obvious link between the subject matter and a ‘real life’ problem They are shown techniques for doing things with practical advantages They see a model they can emulate, or can concentrate on practical issues They are given immediate opportunities to implement what they have learned

21 Models: 2. Pask (1988) 2.1 Serialist learners –Prefer to take a step-by-step approach –Pieces of information already inter-related –Building from the known to the unknown –More comfortable with "linear" subjects –May lose sight of the broader picture –Impatient with "jumping around“ –Initial stages of learning arithmetic

22 2.2 Holist learners –Prefer to form a global view of subject –Make relations between parts later on –More comfortable with "topic" based learning –May leave gaps, or repeat themselves –May over-generalise –History or literature Models: 2. Pask (1988)

23 Broader distinction made between: Visual-holist learners Verbal-sequential learners

24 Models: 3. VAK (1988) Common distinction between: Visual learners –Prefer to learn through seeing Auditory learners –Prefer to learn through hearing Kinaesthetic learners –Prefer to learn through physical activity

25 Models: 4. VAKT Visual –Seeing: Text, Charts, Diagrams, Pictures Auditory –Hearing: Audio, Music, Speaking Kinesthetic –Bodily Action: Movement Tactile –Touching: Doing with the hand

26  Rooted in psychology of Carl Jung  Adapted by Isabel Myers Briggs in 1940’s  Focus on 4 areas of perceiving and judging  Strong implications for learning Models: 5. Myers Briggs Type Indicator


28 Myers Briggs Four Rating Scales  Energy: Extravert/Intravert E/I  Information: Sensing/Intuitive S/N  Decisions: Feeling/Thinking F/T  Decisions: Judging/Perceiving J/P


30 Extravert/Introvert Receives energy externally or internally Extravert Introvert 49% 51%

31 Extravert/Introvert Extravert Introvert  Tolerate noise and crowds  Talk more than listen  Communicate with enthusiasm.  Be distracted easily  Meet people readily and participate in many activities  Blurt things out w/o thinking  Parties recharge your batteries  Hates to do nothing. On the go  Likes working or talking in groups  Likes to be center of attention  Avoid crowds and seek quiet  Listen more than talk  Keep enthusiasm to self  Concentrate well  Proceed cautiously in meeting people participate in selected activities  Think carefully before speaking  Time alone recharges batteries  Needs to have time to reflect  Would prefer to socialize in small groups or just do job "by myself"  Content being on the sidelines

32 E/I Manifestations COPYRIGHT © PAT MARR


34 Sensing/Intuitive Gaining Information/Perceiving Uses senses Intuitive 75% 25%

35 Sensing/Intuitive Sensing Intuiti ve  Learn new things by imitation and observation  Value solid, recognizable methods achieved in step-by-step manner  Focus on actual experience  Tend to be specific and literal; give detailed descriptions  Behave practically  Rely on past experiences  Likes predictable relationships  Appreciate standard ways to solve problems  Methodical  Value realism and common sense  Learn new things through general concepts  Value different or unusual methods achieved via inspiration  Focus on possibilities  Tend to be general and figurative use metaphors and analogies  Behave imaginatively  Rely on hunches  Value change in relationships  Use new and different ways to solve problems and reach solutions  Leap around in a roundabout way  Value imagination and innovation

36 Sensers and Intuitives



39 Feeling/Thinking Making decisions EmotionsLogic Feeling Thinking 50%

40 Feeling/Thinking Feeling Thinking  Have harmony as a goal  Decide more with my heart  Agree more with others' findings, because people are worth listening to  Notice when people need support  Choose tactfulness over truthfulness  Deal with people compassionately  Expect the world to recognize individual differences  Note how an option has value and how it affects people  Like to please others; show appreciation  Appreciate frequent queries as to my emotional state  ANY feeling is valid  Question others' findings because they might be wrong  Notice ineffective reasoning  Choose truthfulness over tactfulness’  Deal with people firmly, as needed  Expect world to run on logical principles  Note pros & cons of each option  See others' flaws...critical  Tolerate occasional queries as to my emotional state in relationships  Feelings are valid if they're logical



43 Judging/Perceiving Making Decisions Judging Perceive 50%

44 Judging/Perceiving Judging Perceiving  Prefer my life to be decisive imposing my will on it  Prefer knowing what they're getting themselves into  Feel better after making decisions  Enjoy finishing things  Work for a settled life, with my plans in order  Dislike surprises & want advance warning  See time as a finite resource, and take deadlines seriously  Like checking off "to do" list  Feel better with things planned  Settled. Organized.  Like adapting to new situations  Prefer to keep things open  Enjoy starting things  Keep my life as flexible as so nothing is missed  Enjoy surprises and like adapting to last minute changes  See time as a renewable resource and see deadlines as elastic  Ignore "to do" list even if made one  Would rather do whatever comes along  Tentative. Flexible. Spontaneous.

45 Perceivers Resist Closure COPYRIGHT © PAT MARR


47 Myers Briggs Type Indicator ExtravertIntrovert 49% 51% SensingIntuitive 75%25% FeelingThinking 50% JudgingPerceiving 50%

48 Models: 6. Kolb Learning Style Model Reflective Observation Active Experimentation Processing Information Direct Experience Abstract Concept Receiving Information

49 Intersection=Learning Style Reflective Observation Active Experimentation Concrete Experience Abstract Concept Concrete Reflective Reflectors Diverging Abstract Reflective Theorists Assimilating Abstract Active Pragmatists Converging Concrete Active Activists Accommodating

50 Models: 7. Experiential Learning Styles Learning styleLearning characteristic Converger Abstract conceptualization + Active experimentation Diverger Concrete experience + Reflective observation Assimilator Abstract conceptualization + Reflective observation Accommodator Concrete experience + Active experimentation

51 Models: Gregoric Learning Style Model Random Sequential Organizing Information Concrete Abstract Perceiving Information Concrete SequentialConcrete Random Abstract RandomAbstract Sequential

52 Left Brain/Right Brain Learners also favor one side of the brain over another. Left BrainRight Brain logicalcreative verbalspatial analyticalintuitive

53 Models: 8. Multiple Intelligences Verbal-Linguistic Ability to use words and language Logical-Mathematical Capacity for inductive and deductive thinking and reasoning, use of numbers, recognition of abstract patterns Visual-Spatial Ability to visualize objects and spatial dimensions, and create internal images and pictures Body-Kinesthetic Wisdom of the body; ability to control physical motion Musical-Rhythmic Ability to recognize tonal patterns and sounds, sensitivity to rhythms and beats Interpersonal Capacity for person-to-person communications and relationships Intrapersonal Spiritual, inner states of being, self-reflection, awareness

54 If learning is fundamental to everything we do, then understanding one’s unique learning style is fundamental to learning. BUILDING EXCELLENCE…The Learning Individual® Self-Awareness — “Know Thyself” Models: 9. Building Excellence


56 uThe BE Survey is an online learning & productivity style assessment tool (copyright ‘96, ‘98, ‘99, ‘00 R. Dunn & S. Rundle). uBE identifies twenty-one critical variables that can promote or obstruct learning, including the efficacy with which individuals concentrate on, process, internalize, and retain new and complex information. Excellence The Building Excellence (BE) Survey

57 uThe BE Survey generates a personalized Learning and Productivity Style (LPS) Profile report, which includes: nA one-page summary; nNarrative descriptions of one’s preferences; nRecommended strategies; and nA personal development plan to help people create individualized learning solutions. Learning and Productivity Style Profile Report

58 A non- essential element that does not usually require special attention. 0 A non- essential element that, for the most part, does not affect the individual. SLIGHT An essential element that requires attention MUCH of the time. MODERATE An essential element that requires attention ALL of the time. STRONG Interpreting the LPS One-Page Profile

59 DEFINITELY NOT the most effective modality for retaining new and difficult material. LEAST NOT the most effective modality for retaining new and difficult material. LESS


61 LISTEN Remember best when they LISTEN to a lecture, a presentation, or an audiotape. Auditory Learners DISCUSS Remember best when they DISCUSS with others the new and complex information they are learning. Verbal Learners READ Remember best when they READ the written word (textbooks, memos, and messages). Visual Text Learners DOING Remember best by DOING rather than sitting and listening, reading, or thinking about the information. Tactile and/or Kinesthetic Learners SEE Remember best when they SEE (create) mental images of what they hear or read. Visual Picture Learners Perceptual Elements


63 Analytic / Global ANALYTICS… …assimilate and process information best when it is presented sequentially and the information builds toward a conceptual understanding. GLOBALS… …assimilate and process information best when humor and metaphors are used and they need to understand the concept before the details make sense.

64 INTEGRATED PROCESSORS… … use both the Analytic and Global dimensions interchangeably. Persons with this preference often take on the role of an interpreter because they can easily translate what the Analytics and Globals are saying. Analytic / Global

65 Reflective / Impulsive Impulsive learners prefer less detail when making decisions and solving problems. impulsive people want others to When taken to the extreme, impulsive people want others to be brief, be bright, and be gone! Reflective learners take time to weigh their options before making decisions and solving problems. When taken to the extreme, this approach leads to analysis paralysis!


67 Environmental Elements Sound Do you concentrate best with sound in the background or a in quiet environment? Do you study or work best when when the lights are bright or softly illuminated and indirect? Light Do you concentrate and stay focused longer when the temperature is warmer or cooler? Temperature Do you concentrate best when sitting at a desk with a straight- backed chair or more informal seating? Seating


69 At what time of day are you most effective and efficient: Early Morning? Late Morning/ Early Afternoon? Late Afternoon? Evening? Time of Day Do you focus your attention best when you snack while you work or study or snack after you are finished? Intake When you stay in one place for too long, do you become restless and fidgety? Mobility Physiological Elements


71 Positive feedback from others (externally motivated) Positive feedback from yourself (internally motivated) Motivation Do you prefer completing one task before beginning another? Do you prefer to work on several tasks at the same time? Persistence Do you prefer to do things the way you think they should be done? Do you prefer to do things the way others think they should be done? Conformity Do you like others to provide procedures for you to follow? Do you prefer to create your own procedures? Structure Emotional Elements


73 Are you more productive when you work alone or with one other person, in a small group of 3 people, or in a large team? Team Interaction Do you work well with a person who is an expert in his field? Are you less effective when someone is looking over your shoulder when you work or study? Authority Do you prefer routine work using proven methods? Do you become bored when you have to do the same thing over and over? Variety Sociological Elements

74 74 Copyright 2004 Susan M. Rundle Models: 10. Memletics learning system

75 Models: 11. VARK Learning Styles A Simple System to Understand and Use A Simple System to Understand and Use Designed by Neil D. Fleming, Lincoln University, New Zealand Designed by Neil D. Fleming, Lincoln University, New Zealand Developed by help of Charles C. Bonwell, Saint Louis College of Pharmacy, U.S.A. Developed by help of Charles C. Bonwell, Saint Louis College of Pharmacy, U.S.A.

76 A sample VARK Question You are not sure whether a word should be spelled 'dependent' or 'dependant'. I would: a) look it up in the dictionary. b) see the word in my mind and choose by the way it looks. c) sound it out in my mind. d) write both versions down on paper and choose one.

77 The questionnaire output: Learning Preferences V isual A ural R ead / Write K inesthetic

78 If you are a visual learner… You learn best by: Taking notes and making lists to read later Reading information to be learned Learning from books, videotapes, filmstrips and printouts Seeing a demonstration You are good at: Dressing well, putting clothes together easily Remembering details and colors of what he/she sees Reading, spelling and proof reading Remembering faces of people he/she meets (forgets names); remembers names seen in print Quietly taking in surroundings Creating mental photos

79 If you are an auditory learner… You learn best by: Talking aloud Listening to a lecture Discussing in small or large groups Hearing music without words as a background in the learning environment You are good at: Speaking on his/her feet Noticing sounds in environment Remembering names of people he/she meets (forgets faces) Working with words and languages Tuning into small shifts in voice intonation

80 If you are a read/write learner… You: Learn through reading and writing Learn best by reading and re-reading the textbook and their notes, writing and rewriting their notes, and in general, organizing items into lists. Often like to read Learn by listening, speaking, reading, telling, discussing and writing

81 If you are a kinesthetic learner… You:  Process information trough touch, movement and rhythmic movements  Like hands on activities such as wood shop, dance, and/or athletics.  Express yourself and your ideas through movement  Have good fine-motor skills and need to touch and do things

82 What does this mean? You have all four of the learning styles, but you are stronger in some of the areas. Based on your strengths you will find some activities to be either favorable or difficult. Which learning style did you have the lowest score? We are now going to look at how you can improve on this learning style…Write down your lowest learning style and three suggestions that YOU will use to improve.

83 Ways to be a BETTER Visual Learner Occasionally change the color of ink in your pen Use highlighters to point out important information Pay attention to the details of pictures Read ALL of the assignment directions Replace words with symbols or initials. = at ● Use diagrams, flowcharts and graphic organizers to keep your work organized and easy to study.

84 Ways to be a Better Auditory Learner Say vocabulary and spelling words out loud. Read your assignments out loud. Pay close attention to your teacher’s voice. Remember details by saying them over and over. Use a tape recorder Discuss topics with others (have a study group) Study in a quiet so you can recall items discussed in class Use stories, poems, etc to remember items in class.

85 Ways to be a BETTER Read / Write Learner Make Lists Have headings at the top of your page Use post-it notes Keep track of your hand-outs Read notes silently again and again Re-write difficult notes into ones that make it simple for you to remember. Practice doing multiple choice questions. Learn to take good notes in class.

86 Ways to be a BETTER Kinesthetic Learner Type important information Take breaks when needed, especially when studying. Build models to explain yourself during projects Frequently change pens and pencils so you have a different feel when you write. Pay close attention during examples and experiments Use pictures to illustrate ideas.

87 MISMATCH Visual: most people in our culture. Verbal: Most of our teaching material: lectures, texts, equations, overhead, PowerPoint,...

88 MISMATCH Deductive teaching is quick, easy, appears straight forward and easy for the teacher But, it is confusing and difficult for the student. Most students think and learn inductively!

89 MISMATCH If you teach in your own preferred style: –People like you are likely to learn If you teach in multiple styles: –Everyone is more likely to learn more easily

90 MISMATCH Most curricula, textbooks, teaching techniques, and teachers are sequential Global learners make good researchers, systems analysts, and creative problem solvers if they make it through school.

91 Summary Tips Give students the global view or goal at the beginning Teach inductively (step by step) and encourage students to reason deductively Ask questions and devise assignments that cause students to be field-independent Use the Socratic Method so students respond with their own dominant learning style. Appeal to all the senses in your teaching. Plan for active learning. The most prominent learning mode is through doing. Take pains to use the nondominant side of your brain in your teaching methodology Devise lesson plans that use the opposite of your learning style preference (students who have your learning style will catch on easily it is those who do not that are likely to have trouble in your class.) Vary assignments between visual, auditory, kinesthetic and read-write. Use visual approaches rather than lectures, equations, chalkboard, PowerPoint, etc. Use course activities that address each of the different learning styles

92 “I think that only daring speculation can lead us further and not accumulation of facts.” Albert Einstein

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