Learner styles

Teacher / learner learning styles

If every teacher who participates in staff development – or life itself – can be considered a learner, then the following must also apply to teachers:

Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences (1998):

In my own “theory of multiple intelligences,” I argue that human beings have evolved to be able to carry out at least seven separate forms of analysis:

  • Linguistic intelligence (as in a poet);
  • Logical-mathematical intelligence (as in a scientist);
  • Musical intelligence (as in a composer);
  • Spatial intelligence (as in a sculptor or airplane pilot);
  • Bodily kinesthetic intelligence (as in an athlete or dancer);
  • Interpersonal intelligence (as in a salesman or teacher);
  • Intrapersonal intelligence (exhibited by individuals with accurate views of themselves).

Adult learning styles (Anonymous, 1996):

  • adults are autonomous and self-directed
  • adults are goal oriented
  • adults are relevancy oriented (problem centered)–they need to know why they are learning something
  • adults are practical and problem-solvers
  • adults have accumulated life experiences

Kolb’s learning styles:

  • concrete experience: being involved in a new experience
  • reflective observation: watching others or developing observations about own experience
  • abstract conceptualization: creating theories to explain observations
  • active experimentation: using theories to solve problems, make decisions

Willis and Kindle Hodson –  Learning Style Disposition:

  • Performs
  • Produces
  • Invents
  • Relates/Inspires
  • Thinks/Creates

About.com’s Learning Styles page


Anonymous. (1996). Adult Learning Styles. Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Western Ontario. Available: http://www.cyg.net/~jblackmo/diglib/styl-c.html#Adult Learning Styles

Gardner, H. (1998). Intelligence in seven steps. In Dickinson, D. (ed.) Creating the Future: Perspectives on Educational Change. New Horizons for Learning. Available:  http://www.newhorizons.org/crfut_gardner.html [6/2/01].

Kolb, David A. (1976). Learning Styles Inventory. McBer and Company.

Schroeder, Charles C. (1993). New Students – New Learning Styles. Available:
http://www.virtualschool.edu/mon/Academia/KierseyLearningStyles.html [6/2/01].

Willis, M., and Kindle Hodson, V. (1999). Discover your child’s learning style. Prima Publishing.


Lonnie Chu, MA         last updated 7/26/01