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Understanding Different Learning Styles and How to Cater to Them

Learning style refers to the method someone can understand or absorb information. Every human being has a different learning style, meaning every student has a different one. Learning paths offered by schools are the same for all students, which is why students perform differently in class. For some, the learning method suits them perfectly since it may cater to their style of learning, while for others – not so much.

There are 4 main learning styles, which go by the acronym VARK.

·        V – Visual

A student with a visual learning style will understand and learn information much better when they see it visually displayed. Visual learners find it easier to recall information if it has been learned in the form of a picture, a video, a symbol, a diagram, and so on. Visual learners often get bored or lose attention in class when listening to long lectures.

If you want to retain the attention of a visual learner, intersperse the information with images, diagrams, charts, graphs, flowcharts, and so on. It will help learners stay focused during class. Visual learners can also note down the information being relayed, highlight colour code, and use symbols to make the written information visually appealing. 

·        A – Auditory

Learners with an auditory learning style prefer listening to the information to retain it. These groups of learners value discussions, lectures, and debates. Auditory learners like to record information and listen to it later to learn it. They are the most attentive in lectures. Auditory learners like to learn something by reading it aloud. 

If you want to work with an auditory learner - lectures, recording, and group discussions are the best tool to retain their attention and ensure they retain everything for a long-time.

·        R – Read / Write

Students who prefer to learn by reading and writing fit into this category. They consistently take notes and review them later to understand what was taught. They like to make revision notes, rewrite answers to learn them, and are avid readers, so keep an eye on the textbook. 

Retaining the attention of a learner who likes to read and write is by ensuring they take notes during lectures and supplying them with a range of study materials, reference materials, and study resources they go over after class hours. Making checklists and routines helps them keep track of all they have learned. Nowadays, an online learning site provides a range of study resources that can help these kinds of students to incorporate thorough practice.

·        K – Kinaesthetic

Kinaesthetic or tactile learners like to learn by doing. They perform best in practicals where they can touch, smell, hear, and see the theory being demonstrated visually and where they can participate. To retain the attention of a kinaesthetic learner, incorporate practicals in the theory and experiments they can carry out at home to better understand each concept. 


Every student has a mix of all these learning styles in certain ratios. Some prefer to learn by listening, some like to watch it happening, and some are ones conducting the practical to understand course material better. TopperLearning is an e-learning website that caters to the learning needs of all such learners by offering a range of study materials to help them ace their exams.

Tags: VARK

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