There are four learning styles that most people fit in to. Visual/verbal, tactile/kinesthetic, visual/nonverbal, and auditory/verbal. These four learning styles will help you to understand and process any information given to you. Once you know which style you fall in to, you can begin learning the best ways for you to study.
The visual/verbal learning style means that you learn the best from viewing information both visually and in a written format. It works best for you when your instructor uses the blackboard or an overhead projector. If the most important parts of a lecture are put into a bulletin format or used in an outline, you will find it much easier to follow along. Textbook information and class notes will be a great way for you to study and when you’re trying to retain information or remember something, you often can “see” it or picture it in your mind.
Of the four learning styles, the visual/verbal person will want to use color-coding to help them retain information from books or notes. Highlighters and different colored pens are a great way for this learner to absorb information. Summarizing important information from your notes or textbook is another good way for you to retain what you have learned. This person might also try flashcards, diagrams, illustrations, and print-outs to aid in studying.
The second of the four learning styles are visual/nonverbal. This person learns best when they are presented with pictures or visual aids. Instructors who incorporate film, videos, maps, or diagrams will hold the attention of the visual/verbal learner. You may not find study groups helpful and would prefer to work in a quiet room. If you’re trying to remember something, you might picture it in your mind. These learners often tend to be very artistic.
To aid in your retention of information, the visual/nonverbal learner should try using flashcards that have important information on them. Illustrating them with pictures and symbols is another good way to help the information to be retained as well as using highlighters and pens.
The third of the four learning styles is tactile/kinesthetic. This learner enjoys “hands-on” activities in the classroom. Any type of lab setting or fieldwork will help this type of person to understand the information given. Instructor’s that provide their students with demonstrations, presentations, or student learning experiences will be helping the tactile/kinesthetic person learn.
Lectures might be hard for this person to sit through, and that’s why it’s important for them to sit in the front and take notes. Spelling shouldn’t be a concern when you’re writing notes and you should write down important words you hear or draw pictures to depict them.
When you’re studying, try incorporating action into it- read when you’re on the exercise bike or walk back and forth while reciting information.
The last of the four learning styles are auditory/verbal. The auditory/verbal learner works best when information is given to them in an oral format. Lectures and group discussions work well for you and listening to audiotape information is a good idea too.
To study more efficiently, you might want to join a study group or find a person that you work with every day for a few hours on certain material. Read information out loud and tape-record your lectures.