The 7 Methods of Learning

How do you like to learn?

Everybody can learn, but what is the best way for you to learn? Have you ever thought about it? Do you like reading and taking notes, or perhaps watching a film and then talking about it? 

There are seven methods of learning. Most students prefer one or two better than others, or use a combination of them. We are all individual in the specific way we like to study and learn new information. They are listed below with a brief definition.

Visual – Also called spatial. The visual method means you like to see to learn and like movies or pictures. You like to watch a demonstration of an activity and then can remember it best.

Aural – This is using your listening skills to help you learn. It also includes using music to help remember. Using Audible, or other recorded books is a great choice for aural learners.

Verbal or Linguistic Learning

Verbal – People who prefer verbal, or linguistic methods like to use words in speaking and writing. After learning new materials, you like to discuss the topic with others, or write about it.

Physical – Also called kinesthetic, and this means using your body to physically learn how to accomplish a task. You need to do it or feel it. You learn best when you are physically trying to accomplish the task shown in the lesson. This could be cooking, or trying a new sport.

Logical – It’s a mathematical method and relies on logic and reason to figure things out. Looking at facts and details are required for this kind of learning.

Social Learning

Social – People who prefer this method like to learn and share questions with others in a group. Learners can ask questions of other students, or listen to their opinions and gain even more knowledge from somebody else.

Studying alone (Photo by Sven Mieke on Unsplash)

Solitary – Just as it sounds, these students prefer to learn and study on their own privately. They do not gain anything from listening to conversations with others on the topic. Solitary learns may find that being in a group setting actually distracts them from the topic.

Most traditional schools use the logical and verbal methods to educate their students. Both social and solitary teaching is used in public schools as well. I remember a mix of many methods during my education, but mostly aural, verbal, and logical in my post-secondary years.

How can this help you in studying for the TOEFL or IELTS exam? If you understand which method works best for you then you can adapt your training to your personal preference. If you like studying alone, then signing up for a group class is not in your best interest. You will feel resentful of other people’s questions and not learn as well. 

If you prefer visual and aural learning, then videos would help you retain the information best. Find an online course based mostly on videos, or search YouTube for videos on your topic of interest. 

Think about how you do your best studying and the answer should come to you. Use this information to make it as easy as possible to prepare for your exam, or to learn something new, no matter the subject.

(I personally prefer a mix of aural, visual and verbal methods. I especially like taking notes and then rewriting them. This helps me remember details more clearly.)

Find your best way and let it help guide you!

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