Do you remember last minute cramming for an exam? Did you use flashcards to learn vocab? Did you make up mnemonics to help you remember information? Whichever way you learned, are you sure this was the correct way to help YOU store information? Studies have shown that there are four main ways of learning: Visual, Auditory, Read/write and Kinesthetic. Each of these learning styles requires different ways of teaching and ways of remembering information.
If you are a visual learner, you will prefer to see the information you are learning, be that in the form of mindmaps, flowcharts, labelled diagrams, or demonstration.
Here are some top tips for visual learners:
Ask for a demonstration. It can be highly instrumental for a visual learner to actually see the process. Once you have seen a visual representation of the information you will have an easier time understanding the recalling it.
Create graphs and charts. Seeing information in a structured way will help you learn and recall the information. It doesn’t have to be anything particularly fancy, just jot one down in the margin of your work.
Use flashcards. Having information on flashcards can help visual learners to remember vocab especially when illustrating them with relevant pictures of symbols
Auditory learners prefer to learn by listening or speaking, rather than having information displayed visually.
Here are some top tips for auditory learners:
Ask questions. As auditory learners benefit from listening and speaking, it is important to ask questions while you learn, to properly grasp the information you are being taught, by asking questions you will be recalling information which helps with your interactive learning style.
Record classes. By recording classes you will be able to focus properly on listening during the class, rather than being concerned with noting down everything your teacher is saying, thus giving you more time to process aurally what your teacher is saying.
Read out loud. If you cannot make sense of something, read it out loud. This will help you to clarify what the sentence means.
For learners who prefer reading and writing, they will benefit from having information displayed in words, rather than by listening or seeing images.
Here are some top tips for read/write learners:
Make annotations. Annotating handouts or texts can help you get to grips with the concept being taught. Seeing the words on the page and writing the words will help you to memorise the information.
Reword key ideas. By rewording key ideas and concepts you will gain a deeper understanding of the information, especially when teamed with writing them down.
Write! It may seem obvious, but writing and rewriting your notes is extremely instrumental in helping you learn!
Kinesthetic learners are best at recalling information while they are physically moving their bodies. Often kinesthetic learners will struggle in traditional lecture based learning, and will need to physically move in order to commit something to memory.
Here are some top tips for kinesthetic learners:
Stand up! This may sound simple and sometimes a little silly, but kinesthetic learners retain information better when standing up because it activates the body more than sitting down!
Study while you exercise. Don’t just sit still at a desk to revise. Take your notes outside, walk around or bounce a ball. Try any sort of physical movement and this should help you retain and recall information.
Use real life examples. Kinesthetic learners often benefit from applying information to real life scenarios. Real life examples and case studies can help you to grasp abstract concepts.
Do any of these learning styles apply to you? Does one particularly stand out? Or do a couple seem applicable to your learning? Whichever way you learn, it is important to understand your learning style, so you can get the most out of your education. Try some of these top tips for enhancing your learning!