When we asked students what they needed from TASH, they suggested information about learning styles. Some said that lecturers “assume you've already established your best revision patterns", and that you’ll be able to cope with anything new. Given the range of challenges in university work and assessment, this is probably not a fair assumption, and although you already have many learning skills, it's wonderful that with learning there’s always further to go.
Learning styles set out the different ways in which different people learn in different situations. They’re not a precise instrument, and they don’t say anything about you as a person: no-one, for example, is only “a visual learner”. Someone might learn better from strong visual cues in some situations – for example, watching a demonstration of how to use lab equipment. But when it comes to explaining how to write up the results of an experiment, they might prefer written guidance; and when their tutor gives them feedback, they might learn most if it’s explained to them in person. Also, if you encounter something for the first time in a format you don’t understand, that doesn’t mean that you can’t find it elsewhere in a format that suits you better.
The key thing is that we can all learn differently, and university is a brilliant time to start experimenting with this. You have many opportunities to reflect on information and develop it further, so it makes sense to use the full spectrum of ways of learning. You don’t always need to use a hammer if you know how to use the screwdriver in your toolbox!
Learning skills section contents