There is no question that each of us has preferences for how we like to learn, often referred to as learning styles.
Developing is often seen as being synonymous with training courses. However, taking training courses is not the only, or necessarily the best, way in which learning takes place.
You can also:
- learn from other people’s experiences
- observing and talking to other people is a particularly rich and readily available way to learn
- read or use websites
- undertake development tasks
- take on a new responsibility with the aim of developing specific skills
- seek feedback from other people on what you do and how you do it.
Some researchers claim that in order to ensure that effective learning can take place, you should tailor your learning experiences to fit your preferred learning styles.
Learning Style Theories
There are a number of different learning style theories available, one of which is the VAK model.
According to this, although there may be an element of mixing and matching, most of us prefer to learn in one of the following three ways:
- Visual – a learner who best absorbs information when it is presented in the form of pictures, diagrams, charts, etc.
- Auditory – a learner who prefers listening to information and responds best to voices.
- Kinesthetic – a learner who prefers a physical, hands-on experience, learning best when having the chance to be able to touch, feel or do something.
From reading through these descriptions, you may already have an idea as to which of these different categories you best fit into. However, if you’re unsure, think about the last presentation you attended.
For further insight, use the link provided below to download a copy of the questionnaire (developed by Marcia Conner):
Read the words in the left hand column then select, as honestly as possible, which of the three responses you feel best describes you.
Once you have done this, count the number of ticked items in each column – the one that gives you the highest total represents your primary learning style.