It is widely regarded that there are 4 different categories that people fall into in relation to their learning style. We have always known that people learn in different ways and often methods work for some yet not others. The VARK model was invented in 1987 by a Kiwi named Neil Fleming.
If you would like to know what kind of learner you are? CLICK HERE for a VARK questionnaire.
The ideology was created to help students learn faster and understand concepts by using methods that in particular are suited to the way that they learn and how their brain likes to learn. This in term could be used by teachers to adapt their teaching methods when dealing with pupils of different types of learning styles.
The four individual learning styles are:
A visual learner is someone who learns best through visual means. They prefer looking at things to absorb information. A visual learner benefits from a typical classroom setting. Classrooms are filled with graphics, from whiteboards to overhead projections to posters on the walls. When processing numbers and data a visual learner will be able to process the information far quicker with the use of charts and graphs.
For example, a visual learner would learn to fix a car better if they watch an instructional video rather than listening to an expert explain the process.
In relation to our online whiteboard, Diagrams and charts uploaded to the whiteboard by the tutor are extremely helpful. The visual aspect of teaching and learning online is one of its strongest suits.
An auditory learner will learn best when the information available to them is presented to them audibly and they are able to listen or hear the instructions/demonstrations. Auditory learners best understand new content through listening and speaking in situations such as lectures and group discussions. Aural learners use repetition as a study technique and benefit from the use of mnemonic devices.
In the classroom auditory learners are great at listening to the advice of the teacher and understanding concepts with one explanation. When revising, podcasts and soundbites are a preferred learning technique. Tutors who notice this will engage their pupils in conversation and draw answers out from them verbally.
Students with a strong reading/writing preference learn best through words. These students may present themselves as copious note takers or avid readers, and are able to translate abstract concepts into words and essays. While there is some overlap with visual learning, these types of learners are drawn to expression through writing, reading articles or books, writing in diaries, looking up words in the dictionary and searching the internet for just about everything.
Kinaesthetic learning happens when we have a hands-on experience. An example of a kinaesthetic learning experience is when a child learns to use a swing or to ride a bike. They can read instructions or listen to instructions, but deep learning occurs via the process of doing.
Kinaesthetic learners would prefer to try things out for themselves before being given direction or instructions.
Online tuition and tutoring companies can benefit from their students learning style and adapt their teaching accordingly. Online lessons held on the Sherpa interactive whiteboard can cater to the individual student’s needs.