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Learning to learn, learning to teach Recognizing learning style differences among people How can students help themselves.

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Presentation on theme: "Learning to learn, learning to teach Recognizing learning style differences among people How can students help themselves."— Presentation transcript:

1 Learning to learn, learning to teach Recognizing learning style differences among people How can students help themselves

2 Objectives Describe different learning styles Discuss how learners with different learning styles can adapt to different teaching styles Propose strategies to improve one’s teaching to reach a wider range of student’s learning styles

3 Learning styles “The characteristic strengths and preferences in the ways that [learners] take in and process information” (R. Felder)

4 Learning styles Why worry about learning styles? Instructor Curriculum Student

5 It’s come to my attention, Benson, that you don’t seem to fit in around here!

6 Learning styles Many different models…


8 ActiveReflective SensingIntuitive VisualVerbal SequentialGlobal

9 ActiveReflective SensingIntuitive VisualVerbal SequentialGlobal

10 ActiveReflective SensingIntuitive VisualVerbal SequentialGlobal

11 Learning styles The dichotomous learning style dimensions of this model (active/reflective, sensing/intuitive, visual/verbal, and sequential/global) are continua and not either/or categories. A student's preference on a given scale may be strong, moderate, or almost nonexistent, may change with time, and may vary from one subject or learning environment to another.

12 (Mis)matching teaching and learning styles Students whose learning styles are compatible with the teaching style of a course instructor tend to retain information longer, apply it more effectively, and have more positive post-course attitudes toward the subject than do their counterparts who experience learning/teaching style mismatches.

13 Active Reflective How does the student prefer to process information Through engagement in physical activity or discussion, teaching other students, etc Introspection. Thinking about something alone first Processing

14 Active Reflective Try out and apply new experiences, fast to act Tend to be open-minded Often tackle problems by brainstorming, discussing, and explaining Generally cautious. Observe and ponder experiences Data is collected and analyzed before any conclusion is made

15 Active Reflective Best by doing something active. May be bored easily Gregarious people, prefer group work (where they participate actively) Prefer to work alone (or in pairs) or have time to think things through first In meetings adopt a low profile, listening to others before commenting

16 Active ( How can they help themselves?)  "Let's try it out and see how it works.“ If you always act before reflecting you can jump into things prematurely and get into trouble  Study in a group: Take turns explaining different topics to each other. Work with others to guess what you will be asked on the next test and figure out how you will answer  You will always retain information better if you find ways to do something with it.

17 ( How can they help themselves?) Reflective "Let's think it through first…" if you spend too much time reflecting you may never get anything done. Don’t simply read or memorize the material: Stop periodically to review what you have read and to think of possible questions or applications You might find it helpful to write short summaries of readings or class notes in your own words. Doing so may take extra time but will enable you to retain the material more effectively.

18 Sensing Intuitive What type of information does the student preferentially perceive (working memory)? Favor information that comes through the senses: Sights, sounds, physical sensations Practical, concrete facts Favor information that arises internally through memory, reflection, and imagination: Memories, ideas, insights Imaginative, abstract concepts Perception

19 Sensing Intuitive Manipulating something concrete, learning and memorizing facts and procedures (often like solving problems by well- established methods) Tend to be patient and careful with detailed work (may be slower) More innovative than others Prefer variety, don’t mind complexity, and enjoy discovering new possibilities and relationships Comfortable with theories, new concepts, abstractions, symbols, and formulas (typical science)

20 Sensing Intuitive Dislike complications and surprises Inclined to be practical, need to see real world application, and like hands-on work Dislike routine calculations, repetition, memorization, or too much detail Quick (but may be careless)

21 Sensing (How can they help themselves) If you overemphasize sensing, you may rely too much on memorization and familiar methods, and not concentrate enough on understanding and innovative thinking. Sensors remember and understand information best if they can see how it connects to the real world. Look, brainstorm, and ask for specific examples of concepts and procedures, and find out how the concepts apply in practice.

22 (How can they help themselves) Intuitive If you overemphasize intuition, you may miss important details or make careless mistakes in calculations or hands-on work; In classes that deal primarily with memorization and rote substitution in formulas, you may get bored. Look for interpretations or theories that link the facts You may be prone to careless mistakes on tests because you are impatient with details and don't like repetition (as in checking your completed solutions). Take time to read the entire question before you start answering and be sure to check your results

23 Visual Verbal Through which modality is sensory information most effectively perceived? Pictures, diagrams, graphs, schematics, demonstrations Sounds, written and spoken words, and formulas Input

24 Visual Verbal Remember best what they see. If something is said but not shown (lecture), they may not retain it Absorb information more effectively from pictures, diagrams, flow charts, timelines, films and demonstrations Tend to learn best from written and spoken explanations Understand something better by talking to peers

25 Visual Verbal Prefer their work color coded for categorizing purposes, and highlighted words and sentences for clarity Comfortable reading books and manuals to absorb information

26 Visual (How can they help themselves) Try to find diagrams, sketches, schematics, photographs, flow charts, or any other visual representation of course material that is predominantly verbal. Consult reference books Prepare a concept map by listing key points, enclosing them in boxes or circles, and drawing lines with arrows between concepts to show connections Color-code your notes with a highlighter so that everything relating to one topic is the same color

27 (How can they help themselves) Verbal Write summaries or outlines of course material in your own words Working in groups can be particularly effective: you gain understanding of material by hearing classmates' explanations and you learn even more when you do the explaining.

28 Sequential Global How does the student progress toward understanding? In a logical (linear) progression of small incremental steps In large jumps, holistically. May be totally lost, until they comprehend how everything fits together, and get the “big picture” Understanding

29 Sequential Global Tend to gain understanding in logical steps Prefer to methodically go through calculations until solutions are found Tend to learn randomly without initially seeing connections (may appear to perform poorly), and then suddenly are enlightened

30 Sequential Global Tend to like procedures and specific step-by-step directions to follow May solve problems in an orderly way but may lack grasp of the big picture Tend to solve complicated problems quickly but have difficulty explaining the steps Once the whole picture emerges for them, they will find new ways of accomplishing tasks

31 Sequential (How can they help themselves) If your instructor jumps around from topic to topic or skips steps, you may have difficulty following and remembering. Fill in the skipped steps, consult references When you are studying, take the time to outline the lecture material for yourself in logical order. In the long run doing so will save you time. You might also try to strengthen your global thinking skills by relating each new topic you study to things you already know. The more you can do so, the deeper your understanding of the topic is likely to be.

32 (How can they help themselves) Global You need the big picture of a subject before you can master details. You need to see how new concepts relate to what you already know Before you begin to study the first section of a chapter in a text, skim through the entire chapter to get an overview. Doing so may be time-consuming initially but it may save you from going over and over individual parts later Instead of studying little chunks of material at a time, immerse yourself in individual subjects for large blocks. Try to relate between subjects and with information you have already mastered


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