Learning involves a process of perceiving and processing information. Perceiving simply refers to seeing the information and taking it in, while processing information is how you break the information down and understand it. Your learning style is about how you prefer to perceive and process information.
There are three basic types of learning styles – Visual, Auditory, and Kinesthetic. Visual learners learn best by seeing information. They like to read, use diagrams, and highlight information. Auditory learners enjoy taking in information through listening. They prefer to hear lectures, develop songs for memorization, or engage in class discussions. Kinesthetic learners are hands-on and learn best by doing. They want to experience a task in order to understand it. So what does your learning style have to do with your college success, and how do you determine your personal learning style?
The Key To Success
Discovering your best learning style can really make a difference to your academic success. By knowing your preferred method of taking information in and processing it, you can tailor your study approach to one that works best for you. For example, if you’re a visual learner like I am, you’re probably going to be doomed if you don’t take notes. I know that taking notes can be tiresome and hand-cramping, but it sure beats forgetting everything that was said in the lecture.
Knowing your preferred learning style can help you to better prepare for exams as well. If you know you have a big essay exam coming up, and you’re a visual learner, you’ll want to prepare accordingly by reading your notes and textbook thoroughly and by preparing an outline or color-coded study sheet to help you put it all together.
Define Your Learning Style
You probably have a pretty good idea of your learning preference just based on previous experience, but there are ways you can find out more about your ideal learning style. Make an appointment with an academic adviser. He or she can provide you with resources and inventories that will narrow down your learning style. Your adviser can also discuss ways to optiimize this information by developing study habits that are compatible with your method of learning.
You can also check out this online inventory that will ask you a series of nine questions and provide you with your result based on your answers. You’ll also be given some study tips based on your results. Check it out!