When to Ignore Learning Styles

When you are about to learn something new, your learning style does not matter.

Whether you are a visual learner or a hands-on type, or any of the 4 or 7 or one of the however many learning styles you want to choose from, because there is a lot written about this subject, the bottom line is we all need to start at the same place. Everyone needs an advance organizer.

Begin with the end in mind

An advance organizer presents information before the start of taking a course, but it is not just an overview. The goal is to help the learner begin with the end in mind, prompting the connection of new information to what is already known, triggering organizational cues, and provoking the build of a mental image of the tangible result, or providing that image with pictures.

Jump-start the learner’s ability to store and retrieve details

By facilitating the comprehension of new information and illustrating a path forward towards the completion of a set of complex new tasks the advance organizer improves the learner's ability to store and retrieve the necessary details.

Reduce frustration when learning to use new software

The benefits of an advance organizer are especially evident when it comes to learning to use new software. Before you jump in to play around because you need to learn by doing, or before you start reading the instruction manual because you need to take in all of the information first, take the time to use the advance organizer if provided. If you are building instruction, help yourself and your learners by making an advance organizer. Nothing clarifies your goal like creating that visual of the result.

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