What’s YOUR learning style?


Have you heard of learning “styles”? Do you recognize that you favor certain approaches or types of learning? While everyone has a variety of successful ways that they can learn, it’s been proven through many studies that most people can benefit by tapping into their preferred method of learning. This theory is also known as multiple intelligences and the great thing about it is that the focus is on what works best for YOU!


The general idea is that not everyone learns in the same way. Someone might be able to understand how to run a new program like Adobe Lightroom by reading a blog article or book about it. Others might need a friend or a video tutorial to show them each step. Some won’t feel like they “get it” until they load up Lightroom and try out each feature themselves through trial and error.


Many people will find that combining a few different methods makes the learning even more enjoyable!


Chances are, you already have a pretty good idea of what works for you. Do you prefer to read a book, or listen to a lecture? Can you remember a list of items that someone recites to you, or do you need to have it written down? Do you like to work with your hands, or figure out problems in your head? There are official names for each of these styles and they are the subjects of multiple books, websites, and learning programs.

The founder of the multiple intelligences theory proposed several distinct styles and many programs now recognize these basic approaches for learning:


While these are not scientific quizzes, filling out a few online questions can give you a good idea of what styles fit you the best. I like this one on edutopia.com. Want to see my results?


My strongest areas were intrapersonal, interpersonal, and linguistic. When I clicked on each result I found that these were pretty accurate for me.

Intrapersonal intelligence has been said to be the road to achievement, learning, and personal satisfaction. You are connected to who you are and how you feel, and you know your own limits and abilities. You often set goals for yourself, self-manage, and reflect on results.

Those with intrapersonal intelligence do well in careers where self-management is important, such as being a writer, a teacher, a counselor, a police officer, or a pilot.

Tips for the way you learn:
  • Study alone in a comfortable yet quiet environment.
  • Set goals for yourself, and monitor your progress regularly.
  • Reflect on what you have learned, and think through new material.
  • Create a connection between new material and subjects you already know, and gain understanding by finding their similarities.

Interpersonal learners thrive on social interaction. Friends often ask you for advice because you are understanding and in tune with the people around you and their motives, emotions, perspectives, and moods.

Your ability to manage relationships helps you understand situations and take a leadership role when necessary. You enjoy teaching and sharing your thoughts.

Careers that require insight and the ability to read what someone else is thinking or feeling — such as teaching, psychology, or sales — would be a great match for those with interpersonal intelligence.

Tips for the way you learn:
  • Give and receive feedback.
  • Talk out problems.
  • Work on large-group projects so you can use your social abilities to divide up tasks and understand all aspects of the project.
  • Be a part of active learning through mentoring, tutoring, or an apprenticeship. This activity will reinforce your own knowledge or abilities.

Linguistic learners are often associated with doing well in school. You have the ability to use words effectively for reading, writing, listening, and speaking. The poet has been described as the epitome of verbal-linguistic intelligence.

Tips for the way you learn:
  • Use words to explain complicated subjects.
  • Ask questions.
  • Engage in the Socratic method, digesting information through a question-and-answer exchange.
  • Hone your native ability to tell a story.


This simple little exercise not only helped me better understand my strengths and weaknesses, I also gained some great ideas for how to improve my approach to learning. It’s interesting to me that I scored the same for interpersonal as I did for intrapersonal, but that actually says quite a bit about me. I need my solitude AND people to share my ideas with. It’s a delicate balance at times. This leads me to explore a lot of personality traits in myself as well. I love little quizzes and tools for this type of introspection. Plus, I have a lot of new material for some All About Me pages now!

I’d love to hear what your learning styles are. Smile

katie big