Student Learning Styles

Student Learning Style Surveys Tracey Sullivan Grand Canyon University: SPE 557 September 25, 2012 Introduction There are various meanings for learning styles. Some researchers have found that learning styles are the ways that students respond to learning. While other researchers think that learning styles aren’t what learners learn, but how they prefer to learn. According to Wauters, Bruce, Black, & Hocker, learning styles are “a set of behaviors, attitudes, and factors that contributes learning for an individual in a given situation”.

There has been an inclination of research on learning styles because currently research has been more focused on the academic achievement and IQ of the student’s rather than their learning styles. Furthermore, learning style surveys have been done to help teachers to become better teachers and students to become better students and to increase the chances for a positive outcome for learning. Also learning style surveys are done and the results are analyzed and this helps to provide the proper instruction needed for each student.

Summary After analyzing the student learning style survey, I found that the survey was conducted by school administrators to middle school students to find out what were the student’s regard to their school climate, behaviors, and attitudes towards other cultures. The respondents for the survey were African American, Whites, Hispanic, American Indian, Asian or Asian American, other, and multiracial. I noticed a small percentage didn’t answer the survey.

The survey purpose I feel is to address the opinion of students on their school’s climate, their attitude towards different factors, and the type of behaviors they have had during the school year. The results from the learning style survey helps with the preparation of instruction and also for the students to self assessed themselves for a better learning environment. Furthermore, the results help to improve the quality of teaching and learning.

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The survey was analyzed from different types of factors. According the survey from the Champaign SCRT Appendix D, the survey geared towards the social climate in schools concerning fairness in general in which the results were that African Americans were twice as likely as Whites to disagree or strongly disagree that their perception that all students are treated equally and Whites were almost one and half times likely as African Americans students to agree or strongly agree.

The fairness academically results were that that African Americans were twice as likely as White students to disagree or strongly disagree with the perception that student’s access to academic and social programs are fair, were as, White students were almost twice as likely to agree or strongly agree. The fairness discipline subscale results were that Whites were twice as likely to likely to agree or strongly agree, were as, black students were one and half times more likely to disagree or strongly disagree with the perceptions that student’s discipline was done fairly.

In the trust and respect subscale, the results were that African American students were twice as likely as White students to disagree or strongly disagree with the student’s perception that they trust their teachers, principals, and other staff. In the influence subscale, the results were that there were no differences found between Africans and White students were student’s perceived influence on school operations and decision-making.

In the cultural understanding subscale, the results were that African Americans were almost twice more likely to disagree or strongly disagree with the student’s perception that they were understood by their teachers and other staff in their school. In the need for change subscale, the results were that African Americans were three times more likely than Whites to agree or strongly agree and Whites were twice as likely to disagree and strongly disagree in the student’s perception that there’s a need for change in the school system to better address racial inequities.

In the reasons for misbehaving subscale, the results are that White students were about twice as likely as African Americans to agree or strongly agree and African Americans students were twice as likely to disagree or strongly disagree with the student’s perception of the reason that students have problems in school. In the fear of black students subscale, the results are White students were one and half more likely as African Americans students to disagree or strongly disagree that students and teachers were afraid of African American students and African Americans were twice as likely as White students to agree or strongly agree.

In the experience of racism subscale, the results were that there were no differences found between African Americans and White students on the perceptions of how often they have experienced racism. In the discipline subscale, the results were that African Americans were twice as likely to agree or strongly disagree and White students were almost twice as likely as African Americans to disagree or strongly disagree on the student’s perception that discipline is overly stressed in their school. The survey revealed that African Americans were of the minority group.

Also that African Americans students were treated unfairly and more African Americans were in special education classrooms. Furthermore, more African Americans were suspended because their parents didn’t think stress the importance of a quality education. Some critics would say that this learning style survey doesn’t provide better outcomes for identifying a student’s learning style. According to Entwistle, the “meshing hypothesis” is a “student will learn best if they are taught in the method that this is suitable for their learning style”.

The “meshing hypothesis” is deemed to be invalid because research has found studies that contradict this hypothesis. Learning style surveys are used as self-assessments for students. So I think that the survey is a valid method of gathering information in some aspects. The answers to the survey were probably really not thought out. The students probably just guessed at the answer to just get finish with it. Some students probably felt as though the survey was irrelevant to them learning.

For the most part, students probably were biased when answerin the survey questions. Critique After the analyzing the survey, I think that students wouldn’t think that this was important to their education. I really don’t see how some of the questions as far as race would aid in the student’s learning style. I also felt that there were biased situations. Furthermore, I didn’t see how this survey can be used to determine the way student’s would prefer to learn. Considering that some of the students didn’t answer the survey, I just idn’t see how that would have a positive outcome of how each student’s preference of how they want to learn. I really would have eliminated the child’s lunch payment status. That is irrelevant to how the student learns. This survey targeted minority groups and minority groups probably would face self-esteem issues. With this being said, I feel that some of the questions weren’t meaningful and appropriate. The question I felt was inappropriate were the ones on whether or not the students think that teachers and students were afraid of black students.

I got the impression that the survey was asking students if they feared black students and would prefer have blacks in their learning environments. The reason I say that is the survey was polling other cultures so why were black students the topic of questions. I definitely noticed that African Americans were of the minority group and more likely to have been treated unfairly. Furthermore, I feel that this is the reason why more African Americans are placed in special education classrooms because of biased surveys.

All in all, this leads me with a perception that these surveys are invalid, isn’t meaning and inappropriate. References Champaign SCRT Appendix D. School Climate Survey- Middle School Version. http://www. saschameinrath. com Entwistle, N. & Schmeck, R. (1988). Motivational Factors in Student’s Approaches to learning. Learning Strategies and Learning Styles, 2nd ed. New York, NY: Plenum Press, 1988. Wauters, J. , Bruce, J. ,& Hocker, P. n (1989). Exploring Learning Styles of Minority Students. Journal of American College Reading and Learning. 17, 101-111.

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