Learning Styles Characteristics

Learning Style Characteristics – Peter Honey and Alan Mumford

A survey in 1999 found that this was the most widely used system for assessing preferred learning styles in the local government sector in the UK.

When do I get to do it for real

Prefers to apply new learning to actual practice to see if it works in the real world. Likes laboratories or testing, field work, realistic case studies and observations. Likes feedback, coaching, and obvious links between the current task and solving a problem.  Abstract concepts and games are of limited use unless they see a way to put the ideas into action in their lives.  They are the experimenters, trying out new ideas, theories and techniques to see if they work and often want to find a better way of doing things.


Let’s get on with it

Likes anything new and problem solving, (such as a new TV or mobile phone) and prefers to learn by doing.  Prefer the challenges of new experiences and interaction with others.  They are quite open-minded and involve themselves fully in new experiences.  Puzzles, competitions and quizzes appeal.


I’m going to think about this a bit more

Prefer to learn from activities that allow them to watch, think and review what has happened.  Lectures are helpful if they provide expert explanations and analysis, but they need time to think things over as they avoid leaping in and prefer to watch from the sidelines.  They may keep a low profile and not be very participative in meetings.

They view experiences from a number of different perspectives, collecting data and taking the time to work towards an appropriate conclusion – sometimes eventually!

Enjoy self-analysis questionnaires and personality questionnaires.


Who thought of all this, what are the origins of these theories.

Prefer to think problems through in a step-by-step manner.  Likes lectures, analogies, systems, case studies and models, but talking with experts is normally not helpful.

They like objectives and structure, an opportunity to question, statistics and applying theories.  These learners like to understand the theory behind the action and need models, concepts and facts so that they can analyse, then create a rational, systematic and logical ‘theory’ in their own words.

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