Updated: May 20
Everyone has their unique way of learning and revising information, you may be doing this right now in time for your exams and assessments coming up. However, if you feel like your study sessions lack productivity and you find yourself getting distracted easily, you may be following the learning approach that isn’t best for you. Below we’ve compiled some of the most popular learning styles and tailored study techniques to help you get the most out of your revision.
Visual learners absorb information through what they see. They picture things and learn best by utilizing graphs, charts, maps, colours, and diagrams. They can take longer to recall information as they try to picture or replay scenarios in their heads. Visual learners have a short attention span when it comes to listening to speakers or auditory stimuli. They tend to have a vivid imagination, and this can sometimes lead to daydreaming. To avoid this, there are some great revision methods that visual learners can implement:
Flashcards – These can include diagrams & graphs and allows information to be broken down. The flashcards can be colour coordinated for different topics to help with memory retention.
Mind maps – This allows students to visualise links between information in bite-sized amounts.
Posters – This is a popular revision method where students can draw images and diagrams with summarised information all in one place. However, students must be careful not to spend too much time making them!
These individuals retain information best when it is delivered through sound or speech. Auditory learners may face some challenges when instructions or information are given in the written form. They have strong listening skills and find it easy to remember information that has been spoken. For example, they may prefer listening to a lecture over reading a textbook. An auditory learner may find some of these revision strategies useful:
Podcasts – Informative podcasts about certain topics, or revision podcasts that have become much more accessible can be a good learning tool.
Q&A sessions – Exchanging verbal questions and answers about revision material with a study buddy can be more helpful than answering written questions.
Background music – When there is silence, auditory learners may start to feel distracted. Subtle music, such as classical or even nature sounds are good fillers.
These learners work best when they have hands-on experience. Learning occurs via the process of doing. To retain and recall information, they need to be actively engaged. This can be through the use of movement, testing and trial & error. Students who follow this approach can get easily distracted or bored in a traditional classroom environment. Here are some techniques that can prevent this problem:
Study blocks – Kinesthetic learners have a shorter attention span than others so it is crucial to break up study sessions into shorter periods. This will give them a chance to renew their focus and increase productivity.
Group revision sessions – Talking and discussing information and material with others is a good way for these learners to consolidate their understanding and stay focused.
Exam imitation – This involves setting up study spaces exactly like the exam hall. This can be achieved by using printed pictures of the hall to stick up around the room. This is an immersive, ‘hands-on’ revision strategy beyond yearly mocks that prepares students by imitating the same environment.
These individuals have a preference to learn through speech, reading and writing. Verbal learners can express problems and solutions through words and puns. They will often have a good memory, as this learning approach involves retaining a wide range of information in short periods. They enjoy using language creatively, usually through fiction and poetry but also through contemporary art. Verbal learning may overlap with auditory learning but there is particular emphasis on writing. Below are some ways to enhance verbal learning:
Restate a lesson or topic – This involves students re-writing material in their own words. It requires them to break down information in different ways until they’re able to retain and recall the material.
Incorporate mnemonic devices – Rhymes, acronyms and poems are only some of the verbal tools that can aid studies.
Teach! - Sometimes recalling what you've learnt back to someone else helps to cement any new keywords or phrases that you may need to explain in the exam. If there is no one available to listen, use a voice recorded app on your phone or online and use this as a way to make notes and revise on the go!
Implementing auditory revision strategies alongside these methods is a great combination for verbal learners.
Whilst these learning types attempt to group students, it is important to note that they are only a guide. You may predominantly follow one approach but can benefit from multiple styles. Some students also use different styles depending on the subject they are studying. It is never too late to try new ones too. Try to introduce different techniques into your studies until you find what suits you best!
Remember, if you need any help and advice when it comes to studying and learning, we have friendly tutors available to help. Book a free session with the team today at https://www.edtree.co.uk/free-offers