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Connection Between Learning Styles and Multiple Intelligences

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Learning styles and multiple intelligences though they seem like two different topics both share several aspects where they evidently overlap. Learning styles as the term suggests are the patterns different individuals follow to acquire, remember and assimilate information and concepts for learning. Learning styles from my understanding suggests that individuals specifically learn through one or two dominant ways. However, based on Howard Gardner’s theory on multiple intelligences outlines that human beings can learn in seven distinct ways. Upon examination of his theory, it further explains that specific learning styles overshadow others within learners, based on how much emphasis is placed on those particular styles.

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It has been said that “We all have special gifts or are intelligent in our own way…” Before university instruction I have always been better with words, hence I avoided subjects involving mathematical concepts, numbers, and figures. The reason for this was because my past learning environments delivered instruction without explaining the reasons behind them. However, as a learner, I rely heavily on logic and I can easily store content in my long-term memory once I can comprehend and justify its use and or importance.

Exposure to learning at the university level has shifted learning for me since I have now tapped into the mathematical part of my brain. This has been wonderful, as I have now conquered phobias that have haunted me for a greater part of my life. As such, this shift in learning proved the merit of Howard Gardner’s theory. His theory claims that learners assimilate in multiple ways and can be strengthened or weakened based on how much practice or emphasis is placed on those ways we learn.

Additionally, Gardner’s theory is not only applicable to academic environments but can also be applied in workspaces as well. The workplace like institutions of academia, require employees to learn and perform certain tasks which do not play on their strengths. As such, based on Gardner’s theory and knowledge of learning styles employees can improve on weaker skills by focusing on and practicing as opposed to emphasizing their obvious strengths.

Though I am a multifaceted learner based on the results of the multiple intelligences assessment there is some intelligence that evidently outshines others. It revealed that I am a visual, conceptual, spatial, social, and creative learner. With the results being close to the same from section to section I would not declare any specific learning style dominant over the other in each section. Instead, I would say that my learning style depends heavily on the content being learned and the learning environment in which it occurs at the given time.

To be more effective at studying, I have assessed my dominant learning styles and as such, I devised a plan to save time and improve retention. As a visual and spatial learner, I plan to continue using different videos explaining concepts as well as incorporate maps and diagrams. I can also visualize and re-enact how to solve problems or perform tasks while closing my eyes. Additionally, since I am quite social, I plan to discuss, sing, dramatize and explain content and concepts out loud to myself and with peers.   

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