How To Study Better By Learning Styles and Multiple Intelligences

Updated on July 29, 2016
Do you know your learning style?
Do you know your learning style? | Source

Do you Know how to Study?

Studying is easy, right? Pay attention in class, read the book, and look over your notes before the test. That may work fine for sometimes, but, if you're like most people, there will come a time in your educational career when this kind of studying takes way too long and doesn't yield the grades you want or need. But how else are you supposed to study?

Think hard for a moment - has anyone ever actually shown you how to study? Has anyone helped you discover your personal learning style so you can study smarter, not study longer? If you would like to learn how to make your studying more effective and find the tools you need to uncover your best learning style, you've come to the right place.

I have written these tips for you, the reader, but they can easily be applied by parents to their struggling students. If your son or daughter is having difficulty in class, even though you know they're a bright kid and totally capable of learning the information, it may simply be that s/he hasn't had the information presented in the best way for his or her personal learning style. You can use these tips, too, to help your child succeed.

Screen capture on 2/18/2013.
Screen capture on 2/18/2013. | Source
Screen capture on 2/18/2013.
Screen capture on 2/18/2013. | Source

You may not have one clearly dominate learning style - that's fine.

Discover your Learning Style

There are many different learning styles and 'multiple intelligences.' Some people are really good at relating to others, some are good at music, math, writing, drawing, or dancing. Not knowing your learning style and having teachers who teach to a very different learning style from your own can leave you feeling like you can't succeed in a particular class or subject area. If you uncover your personal learning style, you may suddenly realize that the seemingly impossible is well within your grasp!

There are many online resources to help you find your multiple intelligences and learning styles. The following list are some of my favorite sites that I've used to learn more about myself.

You may not have one overly dominate intelligence or learning style - that's fine. I am a real learning style mishmash, and knowing that helps me devise study strategies that are engaging in several different ways.

Evaluate how you Study Now

After discovering your learning style, sit down and evaluate how you study now. You do not have to use this chart, but it may help get you started evaluating your current study techniques.

Study evaluation chart.
Study evaluation chart. | Source

Look at your chart and your newly-discovered learning styles. If, for example, your learning style tests indicate you are an auditory learning but you currently reread the text and make study outlines, you could be 'studying smarter.'

This book is a great all-around resource to help younger students discover their learning style and how to study each subject. It shows how to be better at studying spelling, math, geography, and more. In short, it's a fantastic resource for parents!

This book is aimed at the slightly older, self-help student (as opposed to parents of children in younger grades). If you're looking for a more in-depth look at learning styles and what they mean, this is a great place to start.

Develop Techniques for your Learning Style

Studying in a way that matches your learning style will help you spend less time studying for better results. There are many, many different ways to study, but here are a few of the more common techniques.

Visual Learners

  • Make a 'map' instead of an outline. By creating a mental or physical map/flow chart, you can better engage your visual learning tendencies.
  • Look for other ways to study using games, videos, and interactive PowerPoints/presentations.
  • Illustrate your notes with graphs and charts.
  • Visualize the lesson. The ancient Greeks used this technique to remember epic poems. They called it creating your "memory palace." Imagine walking in the front door of your home and finding some historical or literarily character sitting on your couch. You'd be pretty surprised! Then, imagine this person walking around being confused by the items in your living room or explaining how in the world they came to be there.
  • Draw out what you need to study, even if you just use stick figures. Create a picture of a historical vignette or scene from a story you're studying.
  • Create nemonics and draw a picture to remember them. For example, the beginning letters of the nations below the United States down to South America are MGBEHNCP. I turned this into to nemonic "My great big elephant has nine copper pennies."

Auditory Learners

  • Study aloud. Ask a parent or friend to quiz you on material, or talk it over with someone else. If no one else is available, say your notes out loud as you study them. If you feel strange doing this, don't talk at full volume. Vocalize your studying at a whisper, if you want, just get your voice box working!
  • Listen to a lecture or documentary. Ask your teacher if you may record his or her lesson or in-class test review and listen to it. You don't have to simply sit still and listen at home - you play your notes while you do chores, for example.
  • Make up a song. You don't need to be a musical genius - just put the words to a simply nursery rhyme tune. I still know the quadratic equation for calculus because my teacher sang it to us!
  • Make up nemonic devices and repeat them aloud.


These days they're making half-sized index cards! How cool. A full 3x5 index card really isn't necessary for studying most things, but flashcards have always been one of my indispensable study tools.

Kinesthetic/Tactile Learners

  • Make flashcards. I don't like to use an entire index card for simple vocabulary words or dates, so I cut regular index cards in half. I then go through and write the 'questions' on one side of the cards and the 'answers' on the opposite side. The very act of writing out the cards engages tactile learners. Then the simple act of flipping and shuffling the cards can help you engage your tactile tendencies.
  • It sounds boring, but copying key words or dates over and over can help kinesthetic learners. This is particularly helpful if you're studying a foreign language. Writing a word over and over can help lock it in your memory.
  • Get up and move while you're studying. Most classrooms today revolve around sitting still and listening, but that doesn't work well for tactile learners. If your teacher won't let you pace around (and chances are good s/he won't!), move about while you study at home. Pace, walk, tap your feet, or do whatever fidgeting feels natural to you while you read your assignments, do your homework, and go over your flashcards.

If you have a combination of learning styles, there are many ways to combine these tips. For example, writing out flashcards helps me. Then, when I go over them, I read the questions and answers aloud to help engage my auditory memory. I rarely just sit there while studying my cards. Even if I don't pace, I will probably at least stand, which helps engage me in a kinesthetic way so I can stay focused. You can mix and match study techniques to your heart's content in order to engage your personal blend of learning styles.

Have you found your ideal study technique yet?

See results

Studying the Right way Helps!

Studying the right way really does help. I'm not just saying it - I know it. In high school, I was on the academic team. We were ranked 6th in the nation for a while, and I was the 'leading scorer' for almost two years. This means I had to memorize a whole lot of stuff! Simply looking at a list never helped me much - I had to be physically and auditorily engaged in order to remember anything.

No matter how hopeless you feel at a particular subject or overwhelmed by a particular class, every single person has a unique learning style. You just need to find yours and try different study techniques to unlock your hidden potential!

Questions & Answers

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      • profile image

        JuanDiTV 

        10 months ago

        i liked so much!!

      • Kevin Peter profile image

        Kevin Peter 

        5 years ago from Global Citizen

        Wonderful hub,

        I can help my kids with their studies. Your tips were really great.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Paul - music is so helpful! I still remember the quadratic equation because of a song my calc teacher made up a decade ago! Thanks for stopping in and sharing.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thanks so much for the votes!

        Most people can just get by up to a certain point in time without analyzing how they study, which makes it really difficult later on!

      • Tom Schumacher profile image

        Tom Schumacher 

        5 years ago from Huntington Beach, CA

        Natashalh, excellent hub! Many people I know fear the idea of how to approach studying because they've never put forth the energy to discover the style that works best for them. Personally, I came to realize in college that highlighting and writing summaries/outlines is most beneficial for me. Voted up for informative and useful!

      • Paul Kuehn profile image

        Paul Richard Kuehn 

        5 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand

        Natasha,

        This is an awesome well-written hub which is long overdue. It will definitely benefit both teachers and students. It is especially important for students to know how to study, otherwise they will just be spinning their wheels and wasting a lot of time. The theory of multiple intelligences for learning was proposed by Harry Garner. In my EFL classes I also use music in addition to the sensory, auditory, tactile, and kinesthic aspects. Music is great for learning vocabulary, intonation, and also grammar. Voted up and sharing with followers.

      • KidzmetJen profile image

        KidzmetJen 

        5 years ago

        Personality type also matters when you're learning! Kidzmet.com also has a free online test that evaluates personality type, multiple intelligences and cognitive style in one quiz, then gives recommendations that you can use to learn better. :)

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Glad you enjoyed it! Visual doesn't always mean what people assume - since you like painting and taking photos, I'm not surprised you're a little more kinesthetic!

      • cclitgirl profile image

        Cynthia Calhoun 

        5 years ago from Western NC

        Huh...I just learned I'm more kinesthetic than visual. I always thought it was the other way around. Loved this hub and I definitely learned something new!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thank you, DDE. Glad to know I met my goals!

      • DDE profile image

        Devika Primić 

        5 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

        Most interesting and so well put together, you have made such helpful points here and presented this Hub in the most professional way thanks

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Hey, you never know! Where I live, resident seniors can take free college classes, so we certainly have folks taking classes for the fun of it.

        Thanks for stopping by and being so supportive!

      • old albion profile image

        Graham Lee 

        5 years ago from Lancashire. England.

        Hi Natasha. I am now 68 so my time for learning is past but I congratulate you on such an informative and helpful hub. It is nice to see someone who gives help to others so freely. Well done.

        Voted up and all.

        Graham.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        I'm kind of envious of people with one distinct learning style. If I learned just one way, finding study strategies that work might be a bit easier!

      • profile image

        Kelly 

        5 years ago

        I am SUCH a visual learner!

        xx

        Kelly

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Listening really appeals to me because it leaves the rest of me free to fidget! I recently discovered I like audio books a lot because I can listen while I do other thing things (like the dishes, bleh).

        I am really excited about reaching the 100k mark. It took me almost half a year to get 10k, so 100k just 8 months after that is pretty exciting!

      • ComfortB profile image

        Comfort Babatola 

        5 years ago from Bonaire, GA, USA

        I really like the idea of doing a verbal review with someone as most kids today understand better when read to. Even I do. I figure that out from using audio bible.

        You'll really help a great number of people with this hub. Good job Natashalh! And again congrats on your recent milestone of 100,000 views. (claps, claps, claps).

        Voted up and very useful.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Most people teach the way they learn. If they learn by lecturing and taking notes, that is what they tend to do, but not all styles work for everyone, as you know! I really wish more classes focused on learning how to study well.

        Thanks for stopping in and voting!

      • Kathleen Cochran profile image

        Kathleen Cochran 

        5 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

        This is such important information to learn about yourself and your children, especially if they don't learn in the way you do. In college I'd go back and recopy the notes I took in class. That was the best way for me to absorb the material. My husband remembers what he reads and never took notes in class. Up and Useful

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Yes, it is easy to get by in the lower grades and then suddenly reach a point where old study techniques simply aren't working!

        Thank you, Claudia, I appreciate you taking the time to stop in and comment. It's always exciting to get comments on such a new hub!

      • Claudia Tello profile image

        Claudia Tello 

        5 years ago from Mexico

        As a child, I never had problems with studying because paying attention in class was almost always enough for me to learn. Nevertheless, as I have gotten older and deeper into some subject matters I have found that making diagrams and explaining what you have learned in your own words as reinforcement is a very good study technic. Obviously, the more you go through certain information and the more you use it, the more you make it yours and fully come to understand.

        Once again, good idea for a hub Natashalh, congratulations.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thank you! I kind of discovered different learning techniques by accident on my own. It is remarkable to me that no one even really talked about how to study until my 4th semester of graduate school! This is really important stuff that usually gets overlooked.

      • billybuc profile image

        Bill Holland 

        5 years ago from Olympia, WA

        This is such important information, and it is a must for teachers to grasp and understand. Well done, Natasha!

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, owlcation.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://owlcation.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)