The concept of "Learning Styles" was suggested by Rita Dunn in America in 1960's for the first time. Her purpose was to put forward that each individual learns differently. In following years, various theories were produced by several academicians on learning styles. It started to be introduced in schools abroad as a field of practice and research starting from 1990's. There are currently more than 800 researches in this respect conducted in 300 universities.
In our country, the studies intended for determining and implementing learning styles of students in primary school are very limited. For this reason, Bilfen Schools regarded the studies of Prof Dr Rita Dunn from New York St. John's University, the International Learning Styles Centre in America and Prof Dr Ziya Selçuk from Ankara Gazi University on learning styles as the need of our education system as well and put them into practice.
What Is "Learning Styles" and What Is Not "Learning Styles"?
- Learning styles are the methods used by each student in learning new and challenging information in an authentic and different manner.
- There are strengths and weaknesses in learning styles.
- . Dominant use of some tyles is inherent; however, it is subsequently shaped by an individual's academic life, profession and environmental factors.
- A style is not superior than the others; everyone has a peculiar and valuable learning style.
Individuals prefer suitable learning styles for their characteristics. Therefore, learning styles are affected by personal features as well.
- According to the results of studies conducted, it has been figured out that there is not a direct relationship between learning styles and intelligence.
- It has been proved that there is a positive relationship between the education provided in consideration of learning styles and success.
According to a research conducted in America, it is concluded that success is enhanced at the rate of 40% in a Mathematics lesson taught in compliance with learning styles
Thanks to learning styles, underlying reasons of the behaviours displayed by such students that are considered to be hyperactive, naughty and uninterested, deal with something else during the lesson and are observed not to listen to the teacher can be better understood. When learning styles are taken into consideration, it will be possible to understand the behaviours of these types of students and allow them to learn better.
According to the traditional approach, some conditions are imposed to students for being successful and studying effectively when they are studying or preparing for exams For example, it is conditioned that the table or room where a student studies must be tidy, a student must study on the table for a long time without standing up, the room must be quiet, a student must not listen to music or eat anything and students are expected to meet these conditions. These approaches at home and at school which do not suitable for the nature of students are one of the most important reasons that slows down learning in the long term.This can be very challenging for students. In fact, learning styles are based on the opinion that these conditions are different for each student and the prescription for success cannot be identical for everybody.