By its definition, learning is the acquisition knowledge, skills and understanding which is realized through development in ones behavior and the context of memories. It is the basic goal sought in the strive for education and obtained through experience. With the nature and contexts of learning, it may occur in different forms which could be both simple and integrated forms. Learning process also is characterized by a divergence in types and style. The different learning styles are described by various learning models. Conventionally, leaning is the cognitive conception methods through which knowledge or elsewhere skills are acquired.
To many scholars however, cognitive and learning styles are used interchangeably and shows very little difference. At one level, they take learning style as a short hand description of cognitive process applied in thinking, remembering as well as perceiving. Due to the interchangeable nature of the two worlds there is considerably a great value of confusion which occurs in their description. However, cognitive learning style may be described as the consistent behavioral pattern which occurs within the limit of an individual variability. It is the consistent way through which a student will respond to specific challenges of stimuli found within the learning environment. Elsewhere, it is the way characterized by specific methods in which a person acquires and uses the information in the learning process. These processes should be in a pursuit of an expressed differentiation in the psychological array which is observed in various modes of processing the information.
The learning styles are the various traits of psychological effective and cognitive nature whose indication describes the perception built by learners, the interaction phenomenon and the response stimuli with a certain environment of learning. Learning style will therefore explain the nature of the specific interaction into the broad context methods of instruction bound by cognitive characteristics within the learner’s psychology. It can be described as the attitude and interaction treatment within the process of acquiring knowledge. In describing learning style the subject matter of roles of the students in the learning process should not be overlooked. Elsewhere, it would describe the strategic relation of an adaptive character which are found within a specific situation of learning whose dependence is built on factors determined by the students motivation and nature of personality. The aspect of personality is the bridge towards the foundations of the student’s discipline. The nature of such personality/behavior determines the nature with which the students perceive their classroom activity (Sternberg, Zhang, 2001).
Various learning models seek to explain the aspect of learning. The development of this Dunn and Dunn Model is dated back in 1967 by Dr. Rita Dunn. The model is founded on two specific styles theories of learning which are the brain lateralization theory and the cognitive theory. Through cognitive theory, Dunn argued that different individuals will process the same information on different parameters depending on whether the processing traits are got from learning or are subject of inherent traits. Elsewhere, the brain lateralization theory has its basis on the conception that the brain contains two hemispheres whose functions are different. These are the left brain involved in the verbal sequentially of learning abilities while the right brain is involved in the emotional aspects of learning. This is involved in the process conception of special holistic nature. According to Dunn, learning style will begin in concentration, processing and with retaining new and elsewhere difficult information got through the learning process.
To Dunn, various fundamentals defined this model. Firstly, capitalization of the learning strengths by the students is probable. Teachers oftenly used various learning period. Due to the indifferent in strengths, each is allotted specific strength though the same strength is perceived to being different within such different people. Learning is discretional and available to the better population of the society population. Implied here was that, many people are able to learn despite the different degree of knowledge acquisition. Either, the response brought out of different sets of learning environments and resources is subject of been diverse in regard to the different personal strength during the learning process.
Within the Dunn and Dunn Model, various types of learners are dominant. Firstly the visual learners use the body language of the teacher above the facial expression in full understanding the lesson content. Either, auditory learners achieve their learning acquisitions through the listening process to the verbal expressions of the teacher. They also get great knowledge through discussions and the verbal conversation held between them and the other students. The learning process involves the interpretation of the specific meaning, understanding the various verbal speech expressions. The sequential learners follow various logical steps in their due learning process. Elsewhere, the active and reflective learners are highly captured in this model. The active learners are th0se who uses their active characteristic in the learning process. They have a big tendency of actively participating in the learning activities. On the contrast, the reflective learners use their high thinking modalities in the process of learning.
The model makes a comprehensive usage of the learning style instrument. It uses the index of learning style which is an online method of assessment into learner’s preference in the learning process. Ideally, it will assess the level of an individual’s strength in the learning process. Consequently, it will evaluate standards with which such a person will adequately fit in the field of learning. Through this instrument, the teacher is able to evaluate and identify the various preferences allied to students. The application of the LSI helps the teachers in identifying the specific potentialities born by the student so that the teacher can use the most adequate methods of teaching the student which imparts the most authentic piece of the knowledge (Dunn, Griggs, 2000).
The David Kolb was developed by David Kolb in 1984. His main argument is on the experimental learning process. It seeks to describe two learning phenomena. Firstly, it is a mode of learning applicable to students with a possible chance of acquiring and applying the knowledge, feeling and also skills within their immediate and relevant environmental setting. This would imply an encounter of a direct nature with the specific phenomena under study rather than pursuit thinking about such encounter. Elsewhere, it could be taken to imply the kind of education, pursuit whose occurrence is participation of a direct nature into the specific lively events. This learning has no institution of formal education sponsorship but the people do the sponsorship. This involves learning via the sense experience.
It is realized via four villages of understanding. The first village accredits and addresses the level of learning from that of life experience or elsewhere experience from work. The second village has its focus on the changes brought into the social structures from any context of experimental learning process. The third village is an emphasis of the group consciousness that voices moral rationality of the groups who foundation is on the experimental learning. The fourth village is the moral concern on grounds of personal growth or the standards of self-awareness brought about by experiential learning. There focus (villages) is on the role of experience in the learning process.
Either, he uses his model formula encapsulating of a pack of various elements (four). There are the concrete experience, formation of abstract conceptions, reflection and test for the new situations (Dembo, Howard, 2007).
Due to the nature of using sense experience in the learning process, this model is compound by three sets of learners. The Kinesthetic learners achieve their learning through touch, moving and also doing activities. They will explore the world which is around them for their knowledge. The auditory learners drive their knowledge from listening/hearing senses. They will listen their teachers and fellow learners about what they say. They use sound conceptions to get knowledge. The visual learners observe the activities by other people (through seeing) and develop conceptional knowledge from the various body languages as well as expressions made by their teachers. The sequential and learners perhaps dominates this model. Sequential learners will follow suit to various steps in a linear character in the learning phenomenon. They will employ various logical steps in the process of acquiring their knowledge. Global learners are in contrast allied to learning through random processes.
The application of the learning style instrument in this model has its pillars on the four to device techniques with which he/she can accurately help to guide the students in their studies. The essence of the LSI in this model is to provide a room with which the student is able to use is preference parameters in the activity of the learning process (Heiman, 2006).
Dr. Richard Felder developed the Richard Felder learning model. He developed the learning style using the index notations. The development of the model was in 1993. It incorporated five aspects amongst which two were replications of Myers-Briggs arguments as well as the David Kolb model. He argued of the sense perceptions as a pillar in the learning process. Elsewhere, his argument on the reflective dimension which was Kolb’s argument is incorporated. Above these two arguments, he had other additional learning dimensions, which included the visual and verbal inputs, the inductive and deductive organization above that of the sequential understanding. His argument was that these five dimensions were responsible credits for the learning process (Lim, Pek, Chai, 2005).
Like the David Kolb’s model, Richard Felder model incorporated three types of learners. The auditory learners learn through listening the different speech output of their teachers or colleagues. Such a speech entering within the student learning senses would then be interpreted for its conceptual measuring. The kinesthetic learners derived their learning knowledge from their movements and touches. This was highly applicable in the world of science. Either, the visual learners learns through physical look and seeing the learning object. The body movements and expressions of the teachers do an important role improving learner the adequate knowledge in this mode. Either, he used the active and reflective learners.
To the Richard Felder model, application of the learning style instrument is highly dominant. These instruments compound the methodology with which the dissemination of knowledge is made possible from the teacher to the student. This is made possible through the use of the must appropriate methods with which the different learners are provided with adequate environment and appropriate tools for use in their learning process (Morgan, 1997).
Summarily therefore, adequacy in learning is a constituent of specific learning style which commensurate with specific kind of learners. However, for all the models, there is very little difference in the conceptional outlay of the standards using in the learning process by the students. Learning is typical to the ay through which knowledge and skills are acquired through various phenomena in an adaptation to the basics of the knowledge gain. In every choice of learning model the long run result is the same where the teacher and student relationship should be sound for adequate communications between them.
- Dembo, M. H., & Howard, K. (2007). Advice about the Use of Learning Styles: A Major Myth in Education. Journal of College Reading and Learning, 37(2), 101+. Web.
- Dunn, R., & Griggs, S. A. (2000). Practical Approaches to Using Learning Styles in Higher Education. Westport, CT: Bergin and Garvey. Web.
- Heiman, T. (2006). Assessing Learning Styles among Students with and without Learning Disabilities at a Distance-Learning University. Learning Disability Quarterly, 29(1), 55+. Web.
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- Lim, C. P., Pek, M. S., & Chai, C. S. (2005). Classroom Management Issues in Information and Communication Technology (ICT)-Mediated Learning Environments: Back to the Basics. Journal of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia, 14(4), 391+. Web.
- Morgan, H. (1997). Cognitive Styles and Classroom Learning. Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers. Web.
- Sternberg, R. J. & Zhang, L. (Eds.). (2001). Perspectives on Thinking, Learning, and Cognitive Styles. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Web.