Cognitive Learning Styles and Learning Strategies
Cognitive learning styles and learning strategies: Understanding
Cognitive learning styles and learning strategies differ from person to person. Identifying student learning styles helps educators understand how people perceive and process information in different ways. The stable and pervasive characteristics of an individual, expressed through the interaction of one's behavior and personality as one approaches a learning task, is described as a "learning style". Evaluations of new educational technologies have tended to compare learning outcomes of instructional delivery methods with the hope that the new technology will be the one to revolutionize learning. However, results of these evaluations can vary dramatically and are often disappointing.
Cognitive learning styles and learning strategies: Assessment
Cognitive learning styles and learning strategies affect people differently, depending on whether the person has left hemisphere strengths or right hemisphere strengths. For example, a person who performs best on analytical language might lack understanding and the use of correct syntactical structures, as well as semantically ordered comprehension of words and phonetic articulation. Another person may perform best on tasks calling for intuitive feel for language, which would also include expression, richness of lexical connotation, discourse, rhythm and intonation. Another person may have an affinity for methods that are focused, systematic, sequential and cumulative. Yet another person may have an affinity for methods in which various features are managed simultaneously, realistically and in a significant context. That same person would be less likely to direct his own learning and may function well in quasi-autonomy (guided discovery), but may well express preference for a formal, teacher-dominated learning arrangement as a compensation for own perceived deficiency in ability to structure.
Cognitive learning styles and learning strategies: Remediation
Understanding cognitive learning styles and learning strategies takes time. Cognition is the process of perceiving, attending, thinking, remembering and knowing. This allows a person to perceive, relate to and interpret their environment. Learning strategies are what students use when they study. They may select different strategies to deal with different learning tasks. When researchers make distinctions between learning styles and strategies, they are trying to sort through an old psychological argument about whether something is a trait or a state. Is a person's learning style stable over time — therefore a trait? Or does it change with experience or situation — therefore a state? Learning style may have structure but that structure is responsive. The demands of a situation allow for change and adaptation. At LearningRx, we help children every day with different cognitive learning styles. Call a local LearningRx center or log on to www.learningrx.com.