VARK Learning Preferences
Grand Canyon University: NRS-429V
September 28, 2014
The Vark Questionnaire
The VARK questionnaire is a series of sixteen questions that helps students and teachers identify their preferred learning style. “Learning theorist, Neil Fleming,” developed the VARK questionnaire (“Learning styles”, n.d.). Once a student takes the questionnaire, they are provided with a scored list of learning preference categories. The learning preference categories are Visual, Aural, Read, and Kinesthetic. If a student’s preferences are evenly distributed amongst the four learning preferences, they are considered a multimodal learner.
The four possible learning preferences are visual, aural, read/write, and kinesthetic. In the visual learning the preference, the learner prefers to learn visually. Examples of visual learning is looking at graphs, videos, and charts to absorb new information. “People who prefer this type of learning would rather see information presented in a visual rather than in written form (Cherry, n.d.). The next learning preference is aural. According to Cherry, (n.d.) aural learners tend to prefer attending classes and lectures, they prefer to “hear information” and tend to “remember things they are told well.” Following aural learning is read/write learning preference. Read/write learners prefer reading books, articles, and take verbatim notes in order to learn new information. Lastly, there is the kinesthetic learning preference. In the kinesthetic preference, learners have an affinity toward action, they learn best by “doing” and hands-on experiences. In addition to the learning preferences of visual, aural, read/write and kinesthetic there is the multimodal learner. The multimodal learner does not have any one strong preference amongst the learning modalities but rather can learns via any of the preferences listed. It is believed that being a multimodal learner is actually a disadvantage because “multimodal learners usually like to have at least two, three or four modes involved in learning before they are satisfied”(“Your learning”, n.d.) which can become time consuming.
Upon completion of the VARK questionnaire, the noted scores for this writer were as follows: *Visual-5
Clearly the learning preference is read/write. In the read/write preference, the learner prefers to read manuals, articles, textbooks as well as take notes. The notes taken after often verbatim. While this writer does not necessarily agree with this learning modality as a preference, admittedly, writing things out often leads to better absorption of information. This writer also likes making lists, which is also one of the recommended tasks given for people with a read/write learning preference. As per VARK help sheets, some recommended study tasks include: *Writing out the words again and again
*Read your notes again and again
*Rewrite ideas and principles into other words
Although the read/write learning preference was identified as having the most weight with a rating of fourteen, this writer actually prefers an aural learning style. This writer enjoys attending classes and lectures and having someone up in front of them leading a session or class as well as engaging in discussion of the topic with fellow classmates. Admittedly, while “taking in” the information aurally is preferred, writing out ideas and paraphrasing notes is what helps the absorption of new information for this writer.
Influence on Teaching
It is very important that as educators, nurses be aware of their preferred learning styles because it may influence how they teach others. For example, if a nurse prefers to learn visually, they may unwittingly slant their teaching style to one that is visual. While this may work out fine for a patients that has a visual learning style, it will not work out for patients...
References: Cherry, K. (n.d.). What Are the 4 VARK Learning Styles? Retrieved September 28, 2014, from http://psychology.about.com/od/educationalpsychology/a/vark-learning-styles.htm
Frequently Asked Questions. (n.d.). Retrieved September 28, 2014, from http://www.vark-learn.com/english/page.asp?p=faq
Learning Styles. (n.d.). Retrieved September 28, 2014, from http://teach.com/what/teachers-teach/learning-styles
Your learning preference or style. (n.d.). Retrieved September 29, 2014, from http://www.openpolytechnic.ac.nz/study-with-us/study-resources-for-students/getting-started/your-learning-preference-or-style/
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