This week, you might reflect on the variety of presentations for this material – the lecture, the links (especially to Wikipedia entries), videos and podcasts. Which work best (or worst) for you, and why? How do these different kinds of presentations complement your own learning style (refer to any readings you did this week on learning styles)?
I read the Felder and Solomon article “Learning Styles and Strategies” that Bruce linked for us. I think my preferred learning modes are that I am a reflective, intuitive, verbal and sequential learner for the most part.
Reflective: I like to have time to process what I’m learning, and I need to review/summarize periodically for new material to stick. I have learned that I reflect best in writing, so these blog/discussion entries are helpful. I will probably use the blog more now to help summarize and reflect upon the week’s lessons even if that is not assigned.
Intuitive: As an intuitor, I definitely dislike rote memorization, and need to make connections/abstractions to understand material. I find that analogies and metaphors help me to do that, and I am always faster at grasping concepts than details.
Verbal: I tend to be more verbal than visual – I like to learn by reading, although sometimes visuals help me get the overall concept if it is very detailed. In my own studies I need to use visual aides if I am to remember details like dates (timelines, etc); so I have learned to use visuals to supplement my preferred verbal mode. I also tend to be an auditory learner, so I read aloud at times or use a text to speech mode to help me remember details. I definitely like the lectures the best, and find videos tedious mostly (although I do use them to reinforce material I have read first).
Sequential/Global?: I am able to think globally and often do, especially since I like to understand relationships and concepts rather than details. When I read texts with hyperlinks, I do tend to read (or skim) the entire document over first and then go back and click on links. I’m not sure if that is global or sequential. However, a disorganized lecture bugs me, and I tend to only click through to one level since I lose the overall thread of the discussion if I have to click through too many levels before I get back to the main lecture.
When I learn, I like to analyze, then synthesize. That means I like to look at the big picture, take it down to its component parts, analyze the relationships between them, then put things back together in new ways. So I tend to read first for the big picture, then look at details, then read all the detailed info, then put it back together by actually doing what I’ve read about. That is why I think I don’t have trouble with the assignments — by the time I get around to doing them I have already conceptualized them in my head.