An ELT Glossary : Learning Styles

  • Definition : The tendency of learners to favour specific ways of acquiring information/skills 

  • Examples : Some learners may prefer to have presented visually, others to hear it. Some learners like to fully understand grammatical rules, others prefer just to practise using the language even if it's not fully understood. 

  • There are numerous models of learning styles, all of which are intuitively recognisable rather than proven by experiment. Some of the best known models are Visual - Auditory - Kinaesthetic (Bandler and Grinder) and the Honey and Mumford model (Theorist, Reflector, Activist, Pragmatist).

  • There is no proven link between preferred learning styles and effective learning. Some writers (eg Honey and Mumford - see the article by Rosewell referenced below) argue that the most effective learners are those who use a range of strategies related to different styles, depending on what is being learnt. 

  • Further Reading
          Hatami. S. Learning Styles  ELTJ - Key Concepts in ELT
          Rosewell, J Learning Styles  Open University
          Swift, S. Using NLP in ELT An ELT Notebook