Learning styles refer to the ways you prefer to process new information. We each learn and digest information in our own unique way, but there are some common learning patterns, preferences and approaches that we share. Knowing our own style helps us find the best method to acquire and retain new knowledge and skills as well as helping us to understand that other people may approach the same situation in different ways from our own.
Read through the following statements and write down the option that best describes you.
1. When I use new equipment, I prefer to:
Answer A: read the instructions first.
Answer B: listen to an explanation from someone who has used it before.
Answer C: go ahead and have a go, I can work it out as I use it.
2. When I need directions for travelling, I prefer to:
Answer A: use a map.
Answer B: ask for spoken directions.
Answer C: follow my intuition.
3. If I am teaching someone something new, I prefer to:
Answer A: write things down for them.
Answer B: give them a verbal explanation.
Answer C: demonstrate first and then let them have a go.
4. When I go shopping for clothes, I prefer to:
Answer A: imagine what they would look like on.
Answer B: talk to the shop staff.
Answer C: try them on in the changing room.
5. When I am choosing a holiday, I prefer to:
Answer A: read the brochures.
Answer B: listen to the experiences of others.
Answer C: imagine what a particular place would be like.
6. If I was buying a new car, I would prefer to:
Answer A: read reviews in car magazines.
Answer B: talk to friends.
Answer C: test-drive lots of different cars.
7. When I am learning a new skill, I prefer to:
Answer A: watch what the teacher is doing.
Answer B: talk things through with the teacher.
Answer C: give it a try and work things out as I go.
8. When I am choosing food from a menu, I prefer to:
Answer A: imagine what the food will look like.
Answer B: talk through the possibilities with someone.
Answer C: imagine what the food would taste like.
9. When I concentrate, I prefer to:
Answer A: focus on the words or the pictures in front of me.
Answer B: discuss the problem and the possible solutions mentally.
Answer C: move around a lot, fiddle with pens, pencils and touch things.
10. My first memory is of:
Answer A: looking at something.
Answer B: being spoken to.
Answer C: doing something.
11. When I am anxious, I:
Answer A: visualise worst-case scenarios.
Answer B: talk over in my head what worries me most.
Answer C: cannot sit still, I fidget and move around.
12. I feel especially connected to other people according to:
Answer A: how they look.
Answer B: what they say.
Answer C: how they make me feel.
13. When I have to revise for an exam, I prefer to:
Answer A: write lots of revision notes and draw diagrams.
Answer B: talk over my notes, alone or with other people.
Answer C: imagine making the movement or creating the formula.
14. If I am explaining to someone, I prefer to:
Answer A: show them what I mean.
Answer B: explain to them in different ways.
Answer C: encourage them to try, and talk to them as they do it.
15. I find it easiest to remember:
Answer A: faces.
Answer B: names.
Answer C: things I have done.
16. When I meet an old friend, I:
Answer A: say ‘It’s great to see you!’
Answer B: say ‘It’s great to hear from you!’
Answer C: give them a hug or shake hands.
17. I remember things best by:
Answer A: writing them down.
Answer B: saying them aloud or repeating them in my head.
Answer C: doing and practising the activity or imagining doing it.
18. If I had to complain about faulty equipment that I had bought, I would:
Answer A: write a letter.
Answer B: complain by telephone.
Answer C: take the item back to the shop.
19. I often say:
Answer A: 'I see what you mean'.
Answer B: 'I hear what you’re saying'.
Answer C: 'I know how you feel'.
20. The first thing I notice about people is how they:
Answer A: look and dress.
Answer B: sound and speak.
Answer C: stand and move.
Most of us have a blend of styles, not wholly in any of the three classifications. It is probably more unusual to have a style which is entirely in one, especially in this sort of assessment, which is not particularly thorough although it gives a reasonable indication.
Quiz and content source: Pritchard, Studying and Learning at University, 2008