David Kolb's Experiential Learning Style Analysis

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There is no exact definition of the word learning, and in fact it is quite difficult to specify. An appropriate means of defining learning is “a process through which individuals acquire and assimilate new knowledge and skills that result in relatively permanent behaviour changes” (Morley et al 2013). With this in mind, it is evident that there are numerous interpretations upon which these opinions vary with the individuals’ personality and their unique learning style. However, one does not only learn information in a formal environment such as at school or in the workplace as we are constantly learning, sometimes even unintentionally. The mistakes we make teach us new lessons and skills. Our knowledge and ability to learn strengthens through…show more content…
“Experiential learning is an integration and alteration of thinking and doing” (Mullins and Christy, 2010). Kolb believes focusing and reflecting on concrete experiences is essential. He constructed a four-stage cycle involving four flexible learning modes which were Concrete Experience, Reflective Observation, Abstract Conceptualization, and Active Experimentation. Following this he also identified four learning style groups based on the four learning modes which were Divergers, Assimilators, Convergers and Accommodators (Hong et al 2007). Kolb’s Experiential Learning Cycle is very cleverly designed, it is a one way system where one can enter at any stage but must follow in sequence. The test once scored will show the stage in which the individual is strongest and also the score in each quadrant of the cycle. This conveys different individuals may cope better with some parts of the learning cycle to others and the ideal learner will have equal ability at each stage (Duff and Duffy 2002). However, this success will only arise after practice and knowledge of each learning…show more content…
In relation to Honey and Mumford’s learning style questionnaire I scored highest in the Reflector category followed by Theorist, Activist and Pragmatist respectively. As a reflector, after reading in detail the characteristics, strengths and weaknesses linked to my style I discovered many elements which will help me improve in the future learning environment. I prefer to spend time carefully examining and thinking over activities rather than expressing my opinion immediately. I enjoy listening to other people’s opinions, taking them into account and comparing them to my own when making a decision. An example where my learning style is portrayed strongly is when I am given an assignment to complete. I prefer to have many sources of information when researching, and produce many drafts before handing in my completed assignment. In contrast, I am uncomfortable with the idea of having a deadline to reach as I fear rushing through information without studying it entirely. Overall, in my opinion learning styles impact immensely on an individual’s learning ability. The more familiar one is with his/her style the more successful they will be. I believe one’s learning style is much more important than learning itself
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