|I'm a solitary learner|
I didn't really have much to do with any of that - though I did enjoy catching up with a few people. Instead, I spent my time introducing bloggers to Dr. Angie McQuaig from University of Phoenix (my client) and we discussed the importance of learning styles. And it was actually pretty cool.
As I mentioned earlier, people learn in different ways - some by listening, some by doing, some by reading, and so on. University of Phoenix is looking at ways to provide material that fits best with the way the individual student learns. There is a lot of research out there on learning styles - there are several different methods and the field is constantly evolving. We used a tool that lists seven learning styles - visual, aural, verbal, physical, logical, social, and solitary. I found a quick explanation of each style here:
- Visual (spatial). You prefer using pictures, images, and spatial understanding.
- Aural (auditory-musical). You prefer using sound and music.
- Verbal (linguistic). You prefer using words, both in speech and writing.
- Physical (kinesthetic). You prefer using your body, hands and sense of touch.
- Logical (mathematical). You prefer using logic, reasoning and systems.
- Social (interpersonal). You prefer to learn in groups or with other people.
- Solitary (intrapersonal). You prefer to work alone and use self-study.
Dr. McQuaig told me that the most common learning style is visual. This shouldn't come as a big surprise. Aural and physical learning styles are the next most common. But look at how the BlogHer folks did:
The visual learning style was actually the least common of the bloggers who took the quiz. The most common learning style for these bloggers was verbal - and it was no contest. Verbal learners were followed by social learners and solitary learners. (The percentages work out to more than 100 because again, a person can have more than one learning style.)
Now, this is by no means a scientific survey, and Dr. McQuaig would be the first person to say that. Researchers would go on about things like selection bias and so on, and they'd be right. There's no way we could say this quiz represents all bloggers. There's no way we could say it represents all women bloggers. We couldn't even say this represents all women bloggers who attend blogging conferences. But we got enough people to take the quiz that I do think we may have stumbled on to a rather interesting research idea.
If someone could demonstrate a significant difference in the learning styles of bloggers or even a particular type of blogger, it would certainly have an impact on people in my line of work. If I'm designing a blogger outreach campaign, I want the material I use to be as accessible as possible to the people I'm trying to reach. If they're verbal learners, for example, I'm more likely to use tools that allow bloggers to both see and hear words, and make use of acronyms. And it's not just bloggers vs. the general population - if say, mom bloggers are verbal learners while science bloggers are logical learners and political bloggers are visual learners, the tactics I employ may vary for each.
Just a thought.