Have you ever wondered why you can’t learn something super easy that all your friends have mastered?  Or giving someone the same lesson that you once had but it never worked out for them? Do you ever wonder what’s the case behind those myths?

That is because each student has their own way to absorb and store information.  And that’s also why giving everybody the same education can’t guarantee the same result.

As a new school year is approaching, it’s time we gained more insights into our learning styles and tailored a study roadmap.  In this article, we introduce the VARK learning styles model to help you reflect and identify your most suitable approach.

Before rushing into our 3-minute quiz to discover your preferred learning style, let’s take a look at what is VARK model and why is it important.

What is VARK model?

In the 1970s, the idea of individualized learning style became popular and after years of research at Lincoln University, New Zealand, Neil D. Fleming launched the VARK model. 

The VARK is a model suggesting that most students have a preferred learning styles and can be divided into 4 types: Visual, Auditory, Read/Write and Kinesthetic.  Some students find that they are a blend of two, three or even four learning styles. In this case, you have a multimodal learning style in which you will have to adapt different approaches into each stage. 

Why Learning Styles?

Understanding your preferred learning style can help tailor your own study road map and leverage academic achievements.  It is awesome that students know where they want to grow at a young age, and having a tool like VARK can help you get there much faster.  And because each student learns differently, VARK is a great reflection framework as it allows you to take full ownership over the way students absorb knowledge and get ahead at school. 

The 4 Learning Styles

Students can identify their own learning styles through several factors based on study habits as well as everyday activities.  Below are some characteristics and tips that you can use to reflect and design your own study plan.

1. Visual

Do you know that Steve Jobs is a Visual learner?  As a visual learner, he prefers to proceed information in form of pictures, diagrams, demonstrations, displays, handouts, movies, clipart,…  You maybe a Visual learner if you:

  • Process information using charts and graphs
  • Need images to explain concepts & ideas
  • Prefer graphic elements over words

To excel in class, here are some tips for Visual learners:

  • Coloring code important information on your textbooks
  • Making flashcards with pictures or formulas
  • Taking advantage of sticky notes/ post-it notes
  • Drawing on your notes or use mind map

2. Auditory

Do you know Bill Clinton is an Auditory learner?  As an Auditory learner, he prefers to process information in a form of listening: through spoken words, discussions, group debates,…  Auditory learners are happy to attend lectures and receive instructions through phone. You maybe an Auditory learner if you:

  • Learn best when information is spoken
  • Prefer lectures & discussions
  • Process information by talking through things

To excel in class, here are some tips for Auditory learners: 

  • Reading aloud when revise lessons/information
  • Discussing lesson with a group of friends
  • Listening to podcast regularly. Check out the best podcasts from E2 pick here.
  • Recording lessons on your phone and play it to revise

3. Read/Write

Do you know George Orwell (the greatest political writer of the 20th Century – author of the famous 1984) is a Read / Write Learner?  As a Read / Write learner, he prefers information to be displayed in text: report, manual, essay…  People with Read / Write learning style are those who like to read about a subject and rephrase it in their own words.  You maybe a Read / Write learner if you:

  • Prefer to receive written words
  • Enjoy reading and writing assignments
  • Process information by writing their own condensed version

To excel in class, here are some tips for Read/ Write learners :

  • Rephrasing texts using your own words
  • Reviewing textbooks, class printouts before lesson starts
  • Turning diagrams into notes

4. Kinesthetic

Do you know that Lionel Messi is a Kinesthetic learner?  As a Kinesthetic learner, he prefers to process information through physical and hands-on activities: touching, feeling, holding,…  The people with Kinesthetic learning style will be best able to perform new tasks by going ahead and learning as they go. You might be a Kinesthetic learner if you:

  • Learn best through tactile processes
  • Prefer to create concrete personal experiences
  • Process information by recreating & practicing
  • Like hands-on problem solving

To excel in class, here are some  tips for Kinesthetic :

  • Applying the Pomodoro Technique to study in short blocks of time (25 minutes study, 5 minutes rest)
  • Walking or moving while doing revision
  • Keeping your fingers busy while studying (typing notes on your computer, trace words or rewrite sentences to learn key facts)

Now, let’s take this 3-minute quiz to find out what types of learners you are and learn more, achieve more this school year!

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