Learning requires the student to be focused, attentive, and diligent to acquire and master new knowledge. However, for some students, it is more convenient to study on the move, while others close their eyes during the lectures. These features are the manifestation of different learning styles according to the classification of VARK, which are based on the channels of perception of information by a person. Students can use their strengths and weaknesses to perceive and remember information better if they are aware of their learning style. At the same time, it is also vital for teachers to apply various combined methods for the classes to engage the visual, auditory, and kinetic perceptions of students. However, the most important thing for people is understanding individual learning styles as this knowledge helps to transform information into the most convenient option for remembering in education and health promotion.
Summary of My Learning Style
Each person can learn about their learning style and choose strategies bypassing the VARK classification test (Visual, Aural, Read/Write, Kinesthetic). My test results showed that I have a multimodal style with an emphasis on reading, writing, and kinesthetic perception. These features got practically equal points in the test, while the visual and aural perception received only 4 and 6 points, respectively. In general, I expected such results, although it seemed to me that my visual perception was stronger. This learning style means that I better memorize and learn information by reading textbooks, taking notes, and using many examples for different terms or situations. In addition, various practical exercises and interactions with other people also contribute to understanding the topics.
Comparison of Learning Strategies
The learning approaches that I use today partially coincide with the recommended strategies; however, most of them I use only for my home tasks. For example, recommendations for the kinesthetic style include writing notes with numerous examples and colored markers, walking around the room while memorizing, and using cards or games (“Visual, auditory, kinesthetic and multimodal learning,” 2017; “Kinesthetic strategies,” n. d ). I apply all these methods when studying for practice or exams. For example, I often use question and answer cards to prepare for tests. However, lecturers usually only speak or show slides and graphs, so I have to structure my notes in my way to make them more convenient for understanding. Although several times the teachers showed some r arranged useful interactive tasks for students. In addition, students need to read many books and articles and write essays and other works, which is also a strategy suitable for me. I better understand and remember various topics while collecting and structuring information on paper. Therefore, although I apply the right learning strategies for me, more practical and interactive exercises for the classes have brought significant benefits for me.
Impact of Learning Style and Teaching Approaches
My learning style does not mean that I do not perceive visual or auditory information, and this significantly affects my academic results because the other ways of studying are just more useful for me. Some students can require more concentration and attention to understand the text of a scientific article, but they can master it. In general, scientists have proven that the learning style is not decisive for student performance, although the correct use of teaching methods contributes to more efficient use of information. For example, Awang et al. (2017), in their study, showed that the academic results of students with different learning styles are almost the same. In addition, the availability of modern technology allows students to choose the most convenient learning method for them, regardless of the teaching approaches at their universities. For example, there are programs on the Internet that help create flashcards on the topic, or applications that can read the text out loud. Consequently, the learning style does not impact the student’s academic success as it only demonstrates the convenient alternative ways of studying.
Nevertheless, although each student can independently apply learning strategies that are convenient for him or her, the work of the educator is also essential. For example, visuals and kinesthetics do not need to spend time searching for illustrations or examples if the teacher prepares slides for the lesson. Tabatabei (2018) is especially critical of the teacher’s role in learning and says that mismatching teaching and learning styles lead to failure. Moreover, an educator can also work not only in an educational institution, but also as a nurse, and such a mismatch has more serious consequences. For example, verbal advice to a patient about a diet or medication may not have an effect if he or she needs visual reinforcement. There is no doubt that such a mismatch also complicates the learning process for healthcare promotion; however, since, in most cases, teachers use complex approaches, failure is unlikely. For instance, lectures for classes, reading and watching videos, and essay writing affect three learning styles simultaneously. Thus, the correct versatile approach of an educator is a significant part of students’ education, which contributes to their academic success but is not critical.
Effect of Understanding Learning Style in Health Promotion
Understanding the individual learning style by learners and educators has various effects on health promotion. Firstly, students who are aware of their strengths and weaknesses understand that, for instance, the difficulty in reading the article arises not due to their shortcomings but features of their perception. At the same time, they can concentrate on their strengths for greater effectiveness of learning. This knowledge promotes mental health as it reduces the likelihood of stress and negative emotions of students. Besides, the educator’s understanding of the learners’ styles can change their interaction and behavior. For example, a teacher should engage more students with an auditory style in a discussion, but suggest visuals to draw a scheme. Consequently, the mental and emotional health, as well as the student’s behavioral patterns, change to suit their own but not the most common learning styles. The results of this approach are better assimilation of information and knowledge to health promotion and the subsequent application of knowledge about learning strategies. Therefore, although the learning style itself does not affect educational successes, its understanding is necessary for the effective and comfortable education of specialists promoting health.
Understanding the learning style and its application has a significant impact on educational outcomes, health promotion, and people’s behavior. Since each learning style has its strengths and weaknesses, and modern teaching approaches use different methods of information delivery, the student’s preferred learning methods do not affect their academic success. At the same time, an individual approach to the delivery and test of learner’s knowledge by the educator contributes to more efficient assimilation of information as the student and teacher interact. Consequently, specialists promoting health have a higher level of professional competence and communication for the further dissemination of knowledge among the population. In addition, this approach reduces stress and learning time, contributing to the mental and physical health of a person.
Awang, H., Samad, N. A., Faiz, N. S. M., Roddin, R., & Kankia, J. D. (2017). Relationship between the Learning Styles Preferences and Academic Achievement. IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering, 226, 1–5. doi: 10.1088/1757-899x/226/1/012193.
Kinesthetic strategies. (n.d.).
Tabatabei, E. (2018). Innovative, creative VARK learning styles improvement strategies. Global Journal of Foreign Language Teaching. 8(3), 87–93.
Visual, auditory, kinesthetic and multimodal learning. (2017). Web.