Learning, the acquisition of knowledge or skills, is a complex and very nuanced process. Throughout the education and training sectors, this process varies significantly in methodology and even more so in to effectiveness.
One widely accepted method of increasing training effectiveness, is the process of tailoring the delivery methods to suit the audiences learning styles, by implementing the VARK assessment.
This assessment aims to identify individual’s learning styles by asking a number of questions.
What are learning styles?
A learning style is the optimum way that an individual takes in and retains information and skills. These are broken down in to 4 main categories, known as the VARK model:
- Visual learning
- Auditory learning
- Read/write learning
- Kinesthetic learning
It is believed that visual learners have a preference for seeing visual aids that represent ideas, using methods other than words, such as graphs, charts, diagrams, symbols, etc.
Auditory Learners best learn through listening, using methods such as lectures, discussions, tapes, etc.
The most effective learning methods for this group is by text book, course notes, exams and revision.
Also known as tactile Learners, prefer to learn via experience; by moving, touching, and doing.
How can I use Learning Styles to improve training?
Whether you are a trained trainer, a learning and development professional, or regularly coach colleagues in various subjects such as health and safety, you can benefit from using the VARK model to your advantage. By identifying your audiences individual learning styles, you can tailor the content of your training session to cater to their optimum way of learning. This may include:
- including more images and video media for visual learners
- Or including more practical participation and in a course for kinaesthetic learners
By arranging for your delegates to complete the VARK questionnaire prior to your scheduled training session, you can customise the session accordingly to maximise the effectiveness of your training. Try the VARK assessment yourself and use it for your next training course: