Learning Styles and Strategies
Learning Styles: Introduction
The biological, physical, social, psychological, and spiritual diversity of humans is attested to by science. The scientific study of human variability might also be useful in the context of education and training. Both the educator and the learner must comprehend the ideas of learning styles to accomplish teaching and learning objectives.
Hu et al. (2021) define a learning style as a learner’s preferred method of processing, absorbing, comprehending, and remembering information. Each learner has a preferred learning style along with tactics for information retention, which are further discussed in this paper.
Summary of the Learning Style
After completing the VARK questionnaire, I discovered that I am firmly a kinesthetic learner. Kinesthetic learners learn through carrying out physical activities (Bokhari & Zafar, 2019). The activities may be a full spectrum of, or just one of the following: case studies, trials, simulations, lab experiments, or demonstrations.
According to Bokhari and Zafar (2019), kinesthetic learning enables the body to communicate through movement, which may be useful in careers requiring practical knowledge like nursing, engineering, medicine and surgery, and catering. Because of this, kinesthetic learners benefit greatly from concrete learning techniques such as active participation in job training with immediate coworkers, simulations, and internships.
Preferred Learning Strategies
People who learn kinesthetically prefer things that are real, even if they are displayed as images or on screens. Practice, simulations, and watching videos on practicum aspects are my preferred learning strategies. Practicing sharpens my skills and allows me to apply what I’ve learned in the classroom to a real-world situation. First, before actively participating in the practice, I like to watch demonstrations and then try on my own or in a group. The practice includes attempting case studies and problems and assisting others in completing technical projects. I’ve also seen how simulations impact my studies and performance in real practical situations.
According to Lesa et al. (2021), simulation is a teaching technique that replicates actual events and processes under test conditions. For example, in resuscitating a child with signs of life, simulations have significantly increased my confidence and ability to handle a real patient situation. Watching videos of actual problems being solved has also helped me to improve my skills in a variety of practicums.
While there are other kinesthetic learning strategies, I’ve mastered the art of sticking to kinesthetic learning through practice, simulations, and video watching. Other kinesthetic learning strategies used by my friends include reading case studies, looking at exhibits, samples, and photographs, role-playing, and discussing notes with another kinesthetic learner.
While it has worked perfectly for them, I only use it to supplement my main strategies. The difference is that my reading and writing learning strategy scored 3 on the VARK questionnaire, so I gained the least from reading case studies.
Learning Styles and the Degree of Comprehension
The ability of a student to process information differently from another student distinguishes learners. While some students have a single preferred learning style, others may have multiple methods that work for them. Few studies have examined the relationship between a learning style and the level of comprehension and which style is best for learning.
In Rujani’s (2019) study, a group of 17 students was given questionnaires to assess their learning style preferences and reading comprehension. The findings revealed that the majority of the students (twelve) were visual learners, four were auditory learners, and one was a kinesthetic learner. 9 of the 17 students scored an ‘A’ in reading, 3 ‘B+’, 4 ‘B’, and 1 ‘C’+. There were 7 ‘A’, 3 ‘B+’, 1 ‘B’, and 1 ‘C’ in the group of visual learners. There were 2 ‘A’ and 2 ‘B’ in the auditory learners’ group, and the only kinesthetic learner scored a ‘B’ in his reading score.
A Pearson correlation was used to determine the correlation between the learning style and the student’s reading comprehension, and the significance score was 0.311, indicating a low correlation. As a result, the researcher concluded that there is a low correlation between a student’s learning style and their level of comprehension. It is therefore critical for an educator to understand the learners’ learning styles to incorporate each style into the teaching plan and accommodate all students.
Learning Styles and Participation in Health Promotion
Health promotion encompasses a wide range of activities, from health education to disease screening to the cessation of risk behaviors such as alcohol consumption and cigarette smoking. The facilitators and the audience/target population are the two groups that take part in health promotion. Both groups must be aware of different learning styles for health promotion to be successful.
For example, health educators must ensure that all learning styles are accommodated, including aural, visual, kinesthetic, and reading/writing learners. This can be accommodated by creating presentations with diagrams, videos, simulations, and problems to be solved, and they must present them verbally to the audience.
On the other hand, the audience must be aware of their preferred learning style to get the most out of the health promotion talks. The learning styles of the targeted population influence behavior change. For example, by showing the elderly population visuals of prostate cancer statistics, they may see the need for screening and be motivated to go to the nearest facility to be screened for prostate cancer, resulting in a positive behavior change.
Humans differ greatly in their learning and comprehension abilities. While some people have a single preferred learning style, others have multiple styles that help them achieve significant comprehension. Thus, educators should understand their students’ strengths and weaknesses in terms of learning style, a step that allows for the development of a well-suited teaching plan.
Although it may appear on the surface that learning styles greatly influence a learner’s understanding, this belief has been disproved by a scribe of authors. Studies have revealed low correlations, which is advantageous to any learner and provides a level ground in which all learners, regardless of learning style, have the same opportunity to gain an understanding of a concept.
Bokhari, N. M., & Zafar, M. (2019). Learning styles and approaches among medical education participants. Journal of Education and Health Promotion, 8, 181. https://doi.org/10.4103/jehp.jehp_95_19
Hu, J., Peng, Y., Chen, X., & Yu, H. (2021). Differentiating the learning styles of college students in different disciplines in a college English blended learning setting. PloS One, 16(5), e0251545. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0251545
Lesā, R., Daniel, B., & Harland, T. (2021). Learning with simulation: The experience of nursing students. Clinical Simulation in Nursing, 56, 57–65. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecns.2021.02.009
Rujani, M. (2019). A correlational study between learning style and reading comprehension at university level students. Proceedings of the First International Conference on Progressive Civil Society (ICONPROCS 2019). https://doi.org/10.2991/iconprocs-19.2019.9