Are learning styles the boss level zombie of neuromyths?

Are learning styles the boss level zombie of neuromyths?

This week we’re joined by Mary Jacob, as we chat about our quintessential pop culture zombos, using them to pick apart neuromyths – and in particular the biggy – Learning Styles!

Before the wickerman gets erected, we’re not conflating these with learner preferences, or learning requirement/needs/delivery/accessibility reqs – we’re focusing on the VARK psychometric guff.

It’s a boss level zombie neuromyth that just won’t die. If you’d like to read up on it yourself we’d recommend these as a good starting point:

  • https://www.pnas.org/content/116/39/19251 Measuring actual learning versus feeling of learning in response to being actively engaged in the classroom, Louis Deslauriers, Logan S. McCarty, Kelly Miller, Kristina Callaghan, Greg Kestin, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Sep 2019, 116 (39) 19251-19257; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1821936116
  • https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1529100612453266 Improving Students’ Learning With Effective Learning Techniques: Promising Directions From Cognitive and Educational Psychology, John Dunlosky, Katherine A. Rawson, Elizabeth J. Marsh, Mitchell J. Nathan, Daniel T. Willingham, January 8, 2013; Psychological Science in the Public Interest, Issue published: January 1, 2013
  • https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1539-6053.2009.01038.x Pashler H, McDaniel M, Rohrer D, Bjork R. Learning Styles: Concepts and Evidence. Psychological Science in the Public Interest. 2008;9(3):105-119.

Mary is also a wellspring of practical tips and research for your own learning and teaching practice. You can find her smashing weekly resource roundups at the Aber Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit site. They’re pretty much a one-stop shop for staying in the loop on what’s happening in the wonderful world of pedagogy, and very worth your time!

Last but not least, a big thankyou to Danielle M Hinton for creating the featured image for this episode 🙂