Stacey Meyer St. Mary’s College of Maryland M.A.T. 2011 Learning Styles and Study HabitsTeaching Students to Take Control of their Own Learning
Participants AP Environmental Science Class 11th-12th grade students 23 students in the class 20 White, 3 minority 4 students in the FARMS program
Problem Few study methods Ineffective studying Mismatch between preferences & methods
Literature Review Learning styles are composed of up to 21 elements When learning styles and instruction are matched, students achieve, feel more confident, and even enjoy learning! Students can be taught to work with their strengths and match their learning style preferences while studying.
Research Questions How do AP Environmental Science students study? Do their methods of study match their learning style preferences? Will students adjust their study methods to match their preferences if taught how to? What do students who changed their methods have to say about it?
Findings/Interpretations How do AP Environmental Science students study? To study for pretest & chapter quizzes most outlined, some read the chapter, and a few tried other methods like self-quizzing.
Findings/Interpretations Do their methods of study match their learning style preferences? Yes and No Reported tactile/kinesthetic preferences but used outlines as their main study method. Even students matched preferences could improve effectiveness
Findings/Interpretations Will students adjust their study methods to match their preferences if taught how to? Few changes made when studying for pretests Several changes when studying for chapter quizzes More reading (p<0.05) Less reliance on outlines (p<0.001) New Strategies used Quizlet(p<0.05) Self-quizzing (p<0.05) Text Annotations, task cards, webs/concept maps
Findings/Interpretations What do students who changed their methods have to say about it? “WHERE WERE YOU FOUR YEARS AGO?? This would helped me on so many tests in the past!” “[This] opened up my eyes to new ways to study” “I didn’t realize that there were some strategies that I wasn’t using that would actually help me”
Findings/Interpretations 20/21 agreed knowing more about how they learn will help them study better & perform better on quizzes 21/21 reported learning new study tools/methods was helpful 21/21 believed Using these new study tools will help them perform better on tests/quizzes. On the posttest more students felt that they studied effectively. p<0.05
Conclusions Although some high school students may be aware of their preferences, they may not know HOW to work to their strengths. If students are encouraged to try out a variety of study strategies they can discover which methods work well with their preferences. Students will take the new strategies that they learn and use them in your class, in other classes, and in the future!
Limitations Small sample size Specific course Learning Styles Index Quizlet bias
Practical Application/Future Research Start out earlier in the year Longer study/intervention Track grades with methods
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