Analytic and Holistic Thinking

Topics: Education, Psychology, Holism Pages: 2 (575 words) Published: April 18, 2012

Analytic students with a left-brain processing style learn very differently from the way students  with a right-brain processing style tend to learn. Analytics learn sequentially, building details into the understanding and often prefer a quiet learning environment, bright light, formal seating arrangements and tend to continue their tasks until they have been completed. This makes them generally more successful in traditional school systems which are based on analytical, logical, academic teaching approaches.  

Holistic/global students however, have a right-brain dominant, more feeling-based thinking style, learn holistically and compared to analytics often 'backwards'. They need the big picture, an overview first and once they understand the concept then they are able to concentrate on details. They prefer learning with what most teachers would describe as distractions: music, conversation, soft illumination, informal seating, snacks, social interaction and with lots of mobility. In addition, holistics often are not persistent, it is not their way to focus on one thing until they reach understanding - they function much more like a 'scatterbrain'. Only if something makes sense to them, can they concentrate on details. They also may get easily bored and need frequent breaks. Usually they return to their assignment, work on it for a short period of time and then need another break. In addition, holistics don't like working on one thing at a time; instead, they prefer to work on multiple tasks simultaneously and enjoy them most when permitted to choose their own sequence and the time frame.  

The younger children are, the more right-brain dominant they are; therefore they need more holistic, right-brain teaching methods because their analytical brain-processing skills are not yet developed and in many people (research estimates approximately two thirds of the Western population) holistic brain-processing remains...
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