Learning Styles/Teaching Styles/Multiple Intelligences


Students learn in a variety of ways and instructors have specific ways of teaching. Instructors who understand and draw on knowledge of student learning styles and understand their own teaching style can greatly enhance their teaching. The links below provide information and inventories on learning styles, teaching styles, and multiple intelligences. The final link, Gracia and Richlin's Teaching with Style, deals more specifically with teaching styles.

General Resources

"Student Learning Styles and Their Implications for Teaching," Susan M. Montgomery and Linda N. Groat. (CRLT Occasional Paper #10, 1998, University of Michigan, Center for Research on Learning and Teaching). PDF/Adobe Acrobat.
This article includes a rationale for understanding student learning styles, covers several learning style models, and discusses the ways in which this knowledge can be used to enhance teaching and learning.

“Learning Styles:  A Review of Theory, Application, and Best Practices,” F. Romanelli, E. Bird, and M. Ryan.  In American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education, February 19, 2009; 73(1):09
Good overview of issues, available instruments, and best practices in assessing students’ learning styles.  Concludes with a section applying learning styles to the classroom.

Learning Styles and Preferences (University of Delaware Center for Teaching Excellence).
Offers links to websites featuring a number of approaches for thinking about students’ learning styles plus some instruments for identifying learning styles.

Learning Styles take your free test (LdPride.net).
Learning styles and multiple intelligences explained; includes a free learning styles self-assessment.

VARK (visual, aural, read/write, kinesthetic): a guide to learning styles.
Complete guide to using and scoring the VARK learning styles survey, including a PDF version of the questionnaire for use online or as a printout.

Index of Learning Styles Questionnaire, Barbara A. Solomon and Richard M. Felder (North Carolina State University).
This questionnaire, based on the Felder-Silverman learning style model, has “good construct and predictive validity” for teaching engineering students as well as those in other disciplines.  Learn more at this site:


Here is the free 44-question self-scoring questionnaire for students, with results provided, based on the Felder-Silverman model:
One faculty member asks students to take the questionnaire, submit it for analysis, then write a reflective essay responding to the results of the questionnaire (“Thinking about learning styles,” Robert Talbert, The Chronicle Blog Network, December 6, 2010). http://www.chronicle.com/blognetwork/castingoutnines/2010/12/06/thinking-about-learning-styles//


MBTI (Meyer Briggs Type Indicator) Personality Test: Understanding Your MBTI.
Describes the Meyer Briggs test and offers an informal online Cognitive Style Inventory. Includes links to resources for learning more about the MBTI.

David Kolb's Learning Styles Model and Experiential Learning Theory (businessballs.com).
Explains Kolb's theory of learning styles, including a visual model of his theory.

Learning Styles.
Click on links down the left side of the page for overviews of presently accepted theories of learning styles including VAK, Kolb, Honey and Mumford, and others. The final link is a discussion of putting the styles together.

Learning Styles and Pedagogy in Post-16 Learning: A Systematic and Critical Review” (2004) by Frank Coffield, David Moseley, Elaine Hall, and Kathryn Ecclestone.
“Summary: This report critically reviews the literature on learning styles and examines in detail 13 of the most influential models. The report concludes that it matters fundamentally which instrument is chosen. The implications for teaching and learning in post-16 learning are serious and should be of concern to learners, teachers and trainers, managers, researchers and inspectors.” Downloadable PDF.

Should We Be Using Learning Styles?: What Research Has to Say to Practice” (2004) by Frank Coffield, David Moseley, Elaine Hall and Kathryn Ecclestone.
“Summary: Learning style instruments are widely used. But are they reliable and valid? Do they have an impact on pedagogy? This report examines 13 models of learning style and concludes that it matters fundamentally which model is chosen. Positive recommendations are made for students, teachers and trainers, managers, researchers and inspectors.” Downloadable PDF.

Teaching With Style by Anthony F. Grasha and Laurie Richlin. Alliance Publishers, 1996. PDF/Adobe Acrobat.
A complete copy of Grasha's book on teaching and learning styles at the college level.

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