12 June 2013

On rehabilitating learning styles?

The latest word is in a special section of the British Journal of Educational Psychology: "Styles, approaches, and patterns in student learning" guest edited by Carol Evans and Jan D. Vermunt in the June 2013 issue (vol 83, issue 2) consisting of an editorial overview and six more specific articles.

The editorial concludes;
"Taken together, the articles in this special section demonstrate that the boundaries
between the research fields of styles, approaches, and patterns in student learning begin to fade. Breaking through the walls of one’s own conceptual models and opening oneself to the limitations, challenges, and insights of related fields make it possible to move forward to better understand individual differences in student learning and their implications for teaching. A one-size-fits-all approach may not be the best way to help all students learn. Recognizing the rich variety in the way students learn (best), as well as the various ways in which teachers may take these differences into account in their teaching (e.g., by adapting, circumventing, creating frictions, stimulating, developing), is in our view the best way forward to do justice to individuality in human learning." (pp. 192-3)
Interestingly, there is no reference to Coffield et al (2004) (presumably insufficiently academically respectable), although there is to Paschler et al (2009).

Evans, C and Vermunt, J  D (2013) "Styles, approaches, and patterns in student learning" British Journal of Educational Psychology vol 83: 2 pp.185-195. DOI: 10.1111/bjep.12017 (Requires Athens or Shibboleth access)

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous11:52 am

    I went on a course recently in writing expert witness reports, which said something about modal auxiliary verbs which is useful in analysing this editorial. The word "may" is used throughout this piece, implying that the conclusions are possibly true. This is not just blow the standard of proof in science, but falls below the considerably less demanding legal standard of proof. We were also told to avoid the phrase "in my view" as it reliably flagged a lower degree of conviction than "in my opinion"

    Telling forms of expression aside, I assume this flags a change in fashion, rather than any new hard evidence?


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