What's Your Learning Type and How Does it Affect Your College Experience?

Howard Gardner, a prominent figure in the education field, developed the Theory of Multiple Intelligences. His types are visual-spatial, logical-mathematical, bodily-kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, linguistic, and musical. The idea is that different people learn in different ways, and these types can come into play with your education experience from elementary to college. As you enter life in a university, the changes in teaching and material can be a big adjustment. Knowing your learning preferences can help to solidify study techniques and inform you about some of the best ways you can learn. 

Whats Your Learning Type and How Does it Affect Your College Experience

Your Major

The way you learn may affect the type of information that you best understand, comprehend, and enjoy. Therefore your learning style can have an effect on the major you select. For example, a person with strong logical-mathematical learning leanings may explore degrees in computer science or a master’s degree in behavior analysis, while a person who absorbs information in a bodily-kinesthetic way may pursue a career as a gym teacher or in physical labor. While you should not allow your learning style to control your choices, you can take it into account with how you best learn and the material that interests you.

Classroom Behavior

On the first day of most college classes, you will receive a syllabus that contains a number of guidelines. No matter what your learning style is, you are expected to follow those guidelines. For example, if the syllabus does not permit talking in class, you may struggle if you are an interpersonal learner. Find other ways to channel that learning style. For example, if the syllabus for an economics class comes with the stipulation, seek out an economics club on campus to share your ideas with other like-minded individuals outside of class to help you understand and learn new information from class.

Contributions to Class

In college, you will find that class participation is often required. Building a forum of discussion is important for learning, and many professors employ this approach. Use your learning style to contribute in the most prolific way possible. Intrapersonal learners, for example, can craft beautifully written reflective pieces to submit to their professors, and logical-mathematical learners can make sure they are always ready to answer questions with logical reasoning and steps for how they reached certain conclusions.

Extracurricular Activities

Your days in a university or college are some of the best to gain involvement into a club or sport. The opportunities are often wide, and you can find ones that match with your learning style. Even if you do not consider yourself a strong athlete, you may learn in a bodily-kinesthetic manner and joining a club sport is a great way to meet people and to learn more about yourself. You can even use movements to help study other material and ingrain your learning into your muscles.

Do not think of your learning style as a barrier when you enter the college environment. Instead, consider how it opens up a number of doors for you to learn important information about the world and your own being.

Contributed by Brooke Chaplan, a freelance writer based in Los Lunas, New Mexico.