Have you ever wondered why some people study so efficiently for an upcoming test while you still find yourself laboring over flashcards for hours? The key to their success is found in their mastery of their unique learning style. Discovering your learning style will allow you to maximize your learning potential.
Learning styles are various ways that individuals best understand and organize information that is presented to them. There are four main learning styles: visual, auditory, kinesthetic, and tactile. Understanding learning styles may aid in effectively absorbing and grasping information in a way that is easily understood by the learner. To understand why learning styles are important, one must understand what is unique to each learning style.
The Visual Learner
The visual learner is one who learns best through visual aids. For example, the information may be best absorbed when information is written, drawn, mapped, or graphed.
The Auditory Learner
The auditory learner is one who learns best hearing information in the form of a song, lecture, discussion or recording. Audio books or having content read aloud is most helpful for auditory learners.
The Kinesthetic Learner
The kinesthetic learner is one who learns best through active movement. Walking around while studying flashcards, creating a dance to memorize times tables or acting out a history story are all ways to engage the kinesthetic learner.
The Tactile Learner
The tactile learner is one who learns best by engaging his or her sense of touch. Learning can best be facilitated through hands-on projects that include touching, modeling, sculpting, or building.
Many people are able to effectively learn using more than one of the learning styles. Unfortunately not every situation is ideal for each learner; thus identifying your dominant learning style and proactively engaging specific techniques will allow you to maximize learning opportunities.
Sometimes it is difficult to determine which learning style best suits you. However, taking the time to determine your unique learning style is worth it for the following reasons:
Benefits of Mastering Your Learning Style
Maximize your learning potential
Many times learning opportunities are limited when they are approached without consideration to one’s learning style. Knowing one’s learning style can help one actively engage in any environment.
Recording a lecture and listening to it is helpful for the auditory learner, taking notes during a lecture works well for a visual learner, participating in hands-on projects is a way to engage the tactile learner and moving around while reviewing material is helpful for the kinesthetic learner. Each situation can be adapted to meet one’s unique learning style. One must know how to engage the proper senses to make the most of each learning opportunity.
Enjoy learning more
Understanding how to approach learning makes it more enjoyable. When you engage the senses that you best respond to, learning will take place without much effort. Learning will become a natural part of every activity. Creative approaches to learning based on one’s learning style allows for fun learning in every situation.
Achieve higher grades and better test scores
Actively learning in every situation will allow one to retain and recall information easily allowing for better performance on homework and tests. Grades will quickly skyrocket when one knows how to gain information and demonstrate understanding on a quiz, essay or test.
Improve your quality of life
Life is a richer experience when it is approached with an understanding of one’s learning style. Seeking out opportunities to enhance one’s experience in life such as visiting art museums if one is a visual learner, going to a musical if one is an auditory learner, engaging in sports activities if one is a kinesthetic learner, and molding pottery if one is a tactile learner are all ways to seeks out opportunities to enrich one’s life.
Invest in your future
Discovering your unique learning style yields a lifetime of benefits. Entrance and exit exams will be easier to pass with flying colors and finding a career that engages one’s dominant senses are just a few ways that mastering one’s learning style can reap years of benefits.
Tailoring study sessions to meet one’s learning style is an investment in all future decisions. A good grade on a standardized test now may get you into the school of your dreams, allow you to perform well in college, and lead to a fulfilling career. It’s never too early to start investing in your future by taking advantage of opportunities that enhance one’s learning style.
Source: “Understanding Your Learning Styles.” Ldpride.net. 2008. Web.