How to Use Learning Style to Improve Study Habits

We are constantly absorbing information from the world around us using all of our senses. You watch people around you, listen to what they are saying, touch different objects, smell a variety of scents, taste flavorful foods — and it all contributes to what you remember. However, each person tends to have one learning style that is more dominant than the others and how you make sense of information most effectively.

The three most common learning styles are visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. Understanding how you learn can help you develop strategies for taking notes in class, organizing your materials, and studying for exams.

Visual Learners

Visual learners can’t just sit and listen to a lecture and recall the information. They may remember some important points, but there is a lot that is forgotten too. If you’re a visual learner, it helps to see the information. That is why writing down notes as the teacher explains things is important so you can go back and look at them later. When reviewing what you’ve learned, it can help to:

· Create your own diagrams and visuals. Draw pictures, outlines, mind maps, flow charts, or timelines. Organize material in a logical way that you can see.

· Watch videos to see concepts in action and connect pictures with what you are learning.

· Use colors. Highlight vocabulary, main points, cause/effects, dates, etc. in different colors so they stand out. You could use different colored flashcards for different types of information. If allowed, mark up the text using colored pens or pencils.

· Re-read your notes and charts so you see the information multiple times.

Auditory Learners

Auditory learners are able to better recall information when they hear it. That means finding a spot to sit in class where you can listen attentively and are not distracted by things around you. It may help to sit up front or close your eyes so you can focus on what you hear. You may also find it beneficial to:

· Ask if you can record lectures to listen back to them later. You could also record yourself reading notes or text.

· Listen to videos or podcasts.

· Read your notes aloud to yourself.

· Have someone ask you questions out loud and discuss the answers.

· Create songs or rhymes to remember facts.

Kinesthetic Learners

Kinesthetic learners do better when they can move around and interact with information. Flexible seating can be helpful to allow more movement, as well as small fidgets to play with while listening. Keeping your hands busy can help focus your mind. Other strategies include:

· Using manipulatives to work out problems. Write important facts on sticky notes that can be physically rearranged to create a flow chart, timeline, or graph.

· Move while you are studying. Read or listen to your notes as you walk. Flip through flashcards while riding a stationary bike. Act out an event or term.

· Re-write or type your notes while you study. The physical act of writing them out again can help you better retain the information.

You may find that different strategies are effective for different classes, so adjust according to what works best for you. Try out a variety of study techniques and see what you like. Understanding how you learn and process information is essential for getting the most out of your classes.

Crafting Scholars creates customized curricula and lessons based on your individual learning style to help you better engage with content and retain information. Whether working on a specific subject or preparing for the SATs or ACTs, we provide individualized support to help you maximize your potential. Contact us today to learn more or get started!