Learning Styles Inventory
LEARNING STYLES INVENTORY The report is the outcome of the project titled “Learning Styles Inventory” . This project report aims to determine the learning Styles of the employees and also to develop a learning styles Inventory. The management can better understand their faculty and environment, conduct effective and productive meetings, refine conflict resolution skills and assemble more effective teams.
India, one of the strongest contenders for the leadership in the Global IT industry, is fast emerging as the “New” leader, especially in the “New Economy” services such as Software Development, IT Services and Business Process Outsourcing services. KGFSL, an acclaimed Information Technology (IT) consulting company catering to clients globally has always focused on leveraging new technologies in a proven, cost-effective fashion by the way of developing quality employees. Everybody has a preferred learning style. Knowing and understanding the learning style helps one to learn more effectively.
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Through identifying the learning style, one will be able to capitalize on his strengths and improve the self-advocacy skills. Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligence Theory which teaches many aspects of human intelligence, learning style, personality and behaviour – in education and industry forms the major input for the study. The study was conducted with a sample of 80 employees of the company,who were actually involved in developing the financial business solution softwares . The sample represented the entire population . The researcher collected primary data from the respondents by means of questionnaire.
The Questionnaire is divided into three parts namely, ‘Personal variables’, ‘Training programs’, and ‘Learning Styles’. Multiple Intelligence questionnaire was completed by the respondents and their scores as Visual, Aural, Linguistic, Kinesthetic, Logical, Solitary and Social learners were recorded. The topic Learning Styles Inventory is relevant for modern era. People have preferences about how they like to learn (learning style). This learning preferences sometimes account for problems in learning. The problem may not be entirely due to their learning style but also due to their previous experience.
From the cohort of employees of KGFSL it was found that Visual, Aural and Logical Intelligences were dominant with them. Also a high degree of correlation is found to exist between the Visual and Social intelligences. Hence it is suggested that the training materials emphasis on interaction coupled with pictorial and diagrammatic representations, multimedia applications utilising sounds and music and procedural flow of concepts need to be incorporated while designing the training materials to exploit the available human talent. LEARNING STYLES INVENTORY
A learning style is the method of learning, particular to an individual that is presumed to allow that individual to learn best or Learning styles are simply different approaches or ways of learning. It is commonly believed that most people favor some particular method of interacting with, taking in, and processing stimuli or information. Based on this concept, the idea of individualized “learning styles” originated in the 1970s, and has gained popularity in recent years. Learning style Inventory(LSI) will provide details of different learning preferences and to determine a student’s learning style.
The LSI diagnoses an individual’s preferences and needs regarding the learning process. It does the following: 1) Allows students to designate how they like to learn and indicates how consistent their responses are 2) Provides a foundation upon which teachers can build in interacting with students 3) Provides possible strategies for accommodating learning styles 4) Provides for student involvement in the learning process 5) Provides a class summary so students with similar learning styles can be grouped together. Everyone has a mix of learning styles. We each learn and process information in different ways.
Some people may find that they have a dominant style of learning, with far less use of the other styles. Others may find that they use different styles in different circumstances. There is no right mix. Nor are the styles fixed. The learning style of one may have more influence than he may realize. Using multiple learning styles and “multiple intelligences” for learning is a relatively new approach. Multiple Intelligences Theory posits that there are seven ways people understand in the world, described by Dr. Howard Earl Gardner in 1983 as seven core intelligences.
It suggests that the traditional notion of intelligence, based on I. Q. testing, is far too limited. Instead, Dr. Gardner proposes seven different intelligences to account for a broader range of human potential in children and adults. Types Of Multiple Intelligence : Visual (spatial) intelligence – prefers using pictures, images, and spatial understanding. Aural (auditory-musical) intelligence – prefers using sound and music. Verbal (linguistic) intelligence – prefers using words, both in speech and writing. Physical (kinesthetic) intelligence – prefers using your body, hands and sense of touch.
Logical (mathematical) intelligence – prefers using logic, reasoning and systems. Social (interpersonal) intelligence – prefers to learn in groups or with other people. Solitary (intrapersonal) intelligence – prefers to work alone and use self-study. According to Gardner, intelligence is much more than IQ because a high IQ in the absence of productivity does not equate to intelligence. In his definition, “Intelligence is a biopsychological potential to process information that can be activated in a cultural setting to solve problems or create products that are of value in a culture”.
The visual (spatial) learning style – Picture Smart The visual style learners, prefer using images, pictures, colors, and maps to organize information and communicate with others to retain information. They can easily visualize objects, plans and outcomes in their mind’s eye. They also has a good spatial sense, which gives them a good sense of direction. They can easily find their way around using maps, and rarely get lost. When they walk out of an elevator, they instinctively know which way to turn. Learning strengths : =; Remembers what they read and write. ; Enjoys visual projects and presentations. =; Can remember diagrams, charts, maps well. =; Understands information best when they SEE it. Traits : =; Prefers to see words written down =; When something is being described, the visual learner also prefers to have a picture to view. =; Prefers a time-line or some other similar diagram to remember historical events. =; Prefers written instructions rather than verbal instructions. =; Observes all the physical elements in a classroom. =; Carefully organizes their learning materials. ; Enjoys decorating their learning areas. =; Prefers photographs and illustrations with printed content. =; Remembers and understands through the use of diagrams, charts and maps. =; Appreciates presentations using OHP transparencies or handouts. =; Studies materials by reading notes and organizing it in outline form =; Enjoys visual art activities The aural (auditory-musical-rhythmic) learning style – Music smart These musically inclined learners think in sounds, rhythms and patterns. They immediately respond to music either appreciating or criticizing what they hear.
They have a good sense of pitch and rhythm. They typically can sing, play a musical instrument, or identify the sounds of different instruments. Certain music invokes strong emotions. They notice the music playing in the background of movies, TV shows and other media. They often find themselves humming or tapping a song or jingle, or a theme or jingle pops into their head without prompting. Learning strengths: =; Remembers what they hear and say. =; Enjoys classroom and small-group discussion. =; Can remember oral instructions well. =; Understands information best when they HEAR it.
Traits: =; Remembers what they say and what others say very well. =; Remembers best through verbal repetition and by saying things aloud. =; Prefers to discuss ideas they do not immediately understand. =; Remembers verbal instructions well. =; Enjoys the opportunities to present dramatically, including the use of music. =; Finds it difficult to work quietly for long periods of time. =; Easily distracted by noise, but also easily distracted by silence. =; Verbally expresses interest and enthusiasm. =; Enjoys class and group discussions.
The physical (bodily-kinesthetic) learning style – Body smart Kinesthetic learners learn through , moving, doing and touching. If the physical style is more like them, it’s likely that they use their body and sense of touch to learn about the world around them. They would prefer to pull an engine apart and put it back together, rather than reading or looking at diagrams about how it works. They have the ability to control body movements and handle objects skillfully. These learners express themselves through movement. They have a good sense of balance and eye-hand co-ordination. (e. . ball play, balancing beams). Through interacting with the space around them, they are able to remember and process information. Learning strengths: =; Remembers what they DO, what they experience with their hands or bodies (movement and touch). =; Enjoys using tools or lessons which involve active/practical participation. =; Can remember how to do things after they’ve done them once (motor memory). => Have good motor coordination. Traits => Remembers what they DO very well. => Remembers best through getting physically involved in whatever is being learnt. > Enjoys acting out a situation relevant to the study topic. => Enjoys making and creating. => Enjoys the opportunities to build and physically handle learning materials. => Will take notes to keep busy but will not often use them. => Enjoys using computers. => Physically expresses interest and enthusiasm by getting active and excited. => Has trouble staying still or in one place for a long time. => Enjoys hands-on activities. => Tends to want to fiddle with small objects while listening or working. => Tends to want to eat snacks while studying.
The verbal (linguistic) learning style – Word Smart Linguistic learners find it easy to express themselves, both in writing and verbally. They love reading and writing. They like playing on the meaning or sound of words, such as in tongue twisters, rhymes, limericks and the like. They know the meaning of many words, and regularly make an effort to find the meaning of new words. They use the words, as well as phrases that the other person have picked up recently, when talking to others. The logical (mathematical) learning style – Logic Smart
Logical learners like using their brain for logical and mathematical reasoning. They can recognize patterns easily, as well as connections between seemingly meaningless content. They can classify and group information to help so that they can learn or understand it. The logical learners work well with numbers and can perform complex calculations. They remember the basics of trigonometry and algebra, and can do moderately complex calculations in their head. They typically work through problems and issues in a systematic way, and like to create procedures for future use.
They are happy setting numerical targets and budgets, and track their progress towards these. They like creating agendas, itineraries, and to-do lists, and typically number and rank them before putting them into action. These learners ask lots of questions and like to do experiments. The social (interpersonal) learning style – People smart If one has a strong social style, he communicates well with people, both verbally and non-verbally. People listen to these learners or come to them for advice, and they are sensitive to their motivations, feelings or moods.
They listen well and understand other’s views and may enjoy mentoring or counseling others. The social learners typically prefer learning in groups or classes, or like to spend much one-on-one time with a teacher or an instructor. They heighten their learning by bouncing their thoughts off other people and listening to how they respond. They prefer to work through issues, ideas and problems with a group. They thoroughly enjoy working with a “clicking” or synergistic group of people. The people smart prefer to stay around after class and talk with others.
They prefer social activities, rather than doing their own thing. They typically like games that involve other people, such as card games and board games. The same applies to team sports such as football or soccer, basketball, baseball, volleyball, baseball and hockey. These social learners are great organizers, although they sometimes resort to manipulation. Generally they try to maintain peace in group settings and encourage co-operation. They use both verbal (e. g. speaking) and non-verbal language (e. g. eye contact, body language) to open communication channels with others.
The solitary (intrapersonal) learning style – Self Smart Solitary learners are more private, introspective and independent. They can concentrate well, focusing their thoughts and feelings on their current topic. They are aware of their own thinking, and may analyze the different ways they think and feel. They spend time on self-analysis, and often reflect on past events and the way they approached them. They take time to ponder and assess their own accomplishments or challenges. They keep a journal, diary or personal log to record their personal thoughts and events.
The self smart like to spend time alone and have a personal hobby. They prefer traveling or holidaying in remote or places, away from crowds. They feel that they know themself and think independently. They may have attended self-development workshops, read self-help books or used other methods to develop a deeper understanding of themself. These solitary learners prefer to work on problems by retreating to somewhere quiet and working through possible solutions. They may sometimes spend too much time trying to solve a problem that they could more easily solve by talking to someone.
They feel a deep sense of dissatisfaction if they don’t know their current direction in life. Inshort the self smart have the ability to self-reflect and be aware of one’s inner state of being. These learners try to understand their inner feelings, dreams, relationships with others, and strengths and weaknesses. As per the multiple intelligence theory these learning styles provide absolutely pivotal and inescapable indication as to people’s preferred learning styles, as well as their behavioural and working styles, and their atural strengths. The types of intelligence that a person possesses (Gardner suggests most of us are strong in three types) indicates not only a persons capabilities, but also the manner or method in which they prefer to learn and develop their strengths – and also to develop their weaknesses. The pressure of possible failure and being forced to act and think unnaturally, have a significant negative influence on learning effectiveness. Happy relaxed people learn more readily than unhappy stressful people.
Develop people through their strengths and we not only stimulate their development – we also make them happy (because everyone enjoys working in their strength areas) – and we also grow their confidence and lift their belief (because they see they are doing well, and they get told they are doing well too). Developing a person’s strengths will increase their response to the learning experience, which helps them to develop their weaknesses as well as their strengths The different intelligences – in Gardner’s context are not a measure or reflection of emotion type.
Intelligences are emotionally neutral. No type of intelligence is in itself an expression of happiness or sadness; nor an expression of feeling good or bad. In the same way, the multiple intelligences are morally neutral too. No type of intelligence is intrinsically right or wrong. In other words intelligences are amoral, that is, neither moral nor immoral – irrespective of a person’s blend of intelligences Intelligences are separate to the good or bad purposes to which people apply whatever intelligences they possess and use. Intelligences are not in themselves good or bad.
People possess a set of intelligences – not just one type and level of intelligence. The primary driver of Gardner’s thinking is the fact, or assertion, that intelligence is not a single scalable aspect of a person’s style and capability. Historically, and amazingly a perception that still persists among many people and institutions and systems today, intelligence was/is thought to be measurable on a single scale: a person could be judged – supposedly – to have a high or low or average intelligence; or a person would be considered ‘intelligent or ‘unintelligent’.
Gardener has demonstrated that this notion is ridiculous. Intelligence is a mixture of several abilities (Gardner explains seven intelligences, and alludes to others) that are all of great value in life. But nobody’s good at them all. In life we need people who collectively are good at different things. A well-balanced world, and well-balanced organisations and teams, are necessarily comprised of people who possess different mixtures of intelligences. This gives the group a fuller collective capability than a group of identically able specialists.
By the same token a person who struggles with language and numbers might easily be an excellent sportsman, or musician, or artist. Many very successful business-people were judged to be failures at school. They were of course judged according to a very narrow definition of what constitutes intelligence. Each one of us has a unique and different mix of intelligence types, and commonly the people with the least ‘conventional’ intelligence actually possess enormous talent – often under-valued, unknown and under-developed.
Gardner pointed out that managing people and organising a unique mixture of intelligence types is a hugely challenging affair. Gardner said that one should not judge and develop people (especially children, young people, and people at the beginnings of their careers) according to an arbitrary and narrow definition of intelligence. We must instead rediscover and promote the vast range of capabilities that have a value in life and organisations, and then set about valuing people for who they are, what they can be, and helping them to grow and fulfill their potential.
The seven intelligences are a bloody good first step towards valuing and developing people in a more compassionate and constructive way. One of the most remarkable features of the theory of multiple intelligences is how it provides seven different potential pathways to learning. If a teacher is having difficulty reaching a student in the more traditional linguistic or logical ways of instruction, the theory of multiple intelligences suggests several other ways in which the material might be presented to facilitate effective learning. The theory of multiple intelligences has strong implications for adult learning and development.
Many adults find themselves in jobs that do not make optimal use of their most highly developed intelligences (for example, the highly bodily-kinesthetic individual who is stuck in a linguistic or logical desk-job when he or she would be much happier in a job where they could move around, such as a recreational leader, a forest ranger, or physical therapist). The theory of multiple intelligences gives adults a whole new way to look at their lives, examining potentials that they left behind in their childhood (such as a love for art or drama) but now have the pportunity to develop through courses, hobbies, or other programs of self-development. The seven intelligences are measurable, we know what they are, what they mean, and we can evidence or illustrate them. However the potential additional human capabilities, perceptions and attunements, are highly subjective and complex, and arguably contain many overlapping aspects. Criticisms: The theory has been widely criticized in the psychology and educational theory communities. The most common criticisms are, ?
Gardner’s theory is based on his own intuition rather than empirical data and that the intelligences are just other names for talents or personality types. ?Intellectual relativism: People have differing abilities within these types of intelligences. Albert Einstein and a person who is good at mathematics both display logical-mathematical intelligence, but at no point does the theory say that all people with the logical-mathematical intelligence are equally intelligent. Despite these criticisms, the theory has enjoyed a great deal of popularity amongst educators over the past twenty years.
Multiple Intelligence theory served as a base for the development of the questionnaire on learning syles. The Questionnaire is divided into three parts namely, ‘Personal variables’, ‘Training programs’, and ‘Learning Styles’. Based on the details elicited an Inventory of learning styles is made. Deciding on the learning styles will provide for the proper development of the training content. This content when matched with the learning preference of the target it will contribute to the success of the training program. Furthermore tips for Trainers is also given.
Learning styles are simply different approaches or ways of learning. It is commonly believed that most people favor some particular method of interacting with, taking in, and processing stimuli or information. Through identifying the learning style, one will be able to capitalize on his strengths and improve the self-advocacy skills. The need to retrain during the career has increased over the past 20 years. As economies and job roles change faster and faster, the ability to learn well, adapt to change and stay mentally healthy has an increasing importance n the future employment & livelihood. Most employees have elements of more than one learning style. It may be useful for the employees to think about their strongest style and weakest style to identify how they learn. By thinking about their preferred style, they can try and apply this to learning new things. If they are able to use their natural style, they may find learning much easier and quicker. Knowing the learning style may help the employees to develop coping strategies to compensate for the weaknesses and capitalise on strengths.
It can no longer be assumed that all employees will achieve by being taught the same way, and consequently new teaching practices are required. The interchange between tutee and tutor plays a vital role in the dynamics of a session. Because of this, it is very important that the tutor uses appropriate and varied tutoring techniques. BIBLIOGRAPHY BOOKS ?A. K. Sah, Systems Approach to Training and Development,Sultan Chand And Sons , Reprint 1992, pp 135-145. ?Ahwathappa. K. , Human Resource Management and personnel Management,Edition 2002,pp 408-421. Anthony Landale, Training and Development-A complete handbook, John Wiley & Sons Ltd, First edition-2004, pp 47,48,67-72. ?C. R. Kothari, Research Methodology ,New age International Publishers, Reprint edition 2006, pp 2 -3, 258-270. ?E. D. Setty, A Practical handbook on Training, Himalaya Publishing House,First edition-2003, pp 42-56,171-180. ?John Braton,Gold Human Resource Management, MacMillan, Edition 1994,pp 666-678. ?Martyn Soloman, A Handbook for Training Strategy, Mohit Publications, First edition-2001, pp 32-38. ?P. L. Rao, HRD Through in-house Training, TATA Mc.
GrawHill, First edition-1995,pp 163-174. ?Sumathi Reddy, Training and Development Trends and experience, Himalaya publishing House, First edition-2003, pp 123-138. ?T. V. Rao, Readings in HRD, Mohit Publications, Fourth edition-2003, pp 142-149. ?Udai Pareek, Training Instrument in HRD and OD, New Age International Publishers, Second edition-2003,pp 351-354. ?Vijaya Kumari kaushik, S. R. Sharma, Education and Human Resource development, Sultan Chand and Sons, Reprint-2004,pp 284-297. ?Wendell L. French, Human resource development, Houghton Mittlin Company Boston, New Jersey, 1990, pp 326-331. JOURNALS Colleen Aalsburg Wiessner, Tim Hatcher, Diane Chapman, Julia Storberg-Walker,” Creating new learning at professional conferences: an innovative approach to conference learning, knowledge construction and programme evaluation”, Human Resource Development International, Volume 11, Issue 4 September 2008 , pages 367 – 383. ?David McGuire, Thomas N. Garavan, David O’Donnell,Sudhir K. Saha, Maria Cseh,“Managers’ personal values as predictors of importance attached to training and development: a cross-country exploratory study”, Human Resource Development International, Volume 11, Issue 4 September 2008 , pages 335 – 350 Steven Eric Krauss, Khaw Ai Guat , ” An exploration of factors influencing workplace learning”, Human Resource Development International, Volume 11, Issue 4 September 2008 , pages 417 – 426 ? Yahn-Shir Chen, Bao-Guang Chang, Chia-Chi Lee ,”The association between continuing professional education and financial performance of firms”, The International Journal of Human Resource Management, Volume 19, Issue 9 September 2008 , pages 1720 – 1737. WEBSITES ?MargaretC. Lohman,http://books. google. co. n/books? id=FueGlAOAM9IC&pg=PA118&lpg=PA118&dq=factors+affecting+learning+styles&source=bl&ots=FJHLBiCAdd&sig=PAggcKGlja0C1NN3YYZSo1sB_o8&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=7&ct=result#PPA119,M1 ? Bethany R. Hartshorn, Dante R. Hill, and Dominique F. Keaton , http://www. learning -styles-online. com/inventory/ ? Colin P West and Tait D Shanafelt, http://www. dominican. edu/query/ncur /display_ncur . php? id=3159 ? French W. L , http://www3. interscience. wiley. com/journal/119534767 ? Paulet &