Different people process and retain information in very different ways. Something that may come easily to one student, may leave another one confused and frustrated. Sometimes, this has very little to do with intelligence- and everything to do with the way that the information is presented.

Some people are fortunate enough to have a “photographic” memory, or the ability to perfectly recall what they’ve seen. These same people may not be able to retain information that they’ve heard or received using their other senses. It all has to do with the way that our brains are wired.

Humans are built to learn and to adapt. This is the basis for the way that we learn throughout different stages of our lives. Memory is what makes the retention of information possible. The human brain’s capacity to recall memories is truly remarkable. Memory allows us to make associations between newly discovered information and the things that we have already learned. The more associations we make, the more we are able to understand and process the world around us.

There are seven identified learning types, and each one does best using a particular type of stimuli. This is one reason that online education has become so popular. Every one of these learning types is able to exercise their abilities free of constraint when attending classes from home. To learn more, you might consider checking out higher education news and articles - and see if you identify with one or more of the learning types below:


This is a leaning style based on our visual perceptions. Spatial learners often retain the most from pictures depicting the necessary information, and they organize what they’ve learned in a visual way as well. They will also have an excellent understanding of their physical relationship to other things in their world. These are the people that always seem to know where they’re going, regardless of how complex the directions seem. Important learning tools for them include: Maps, Graphs, chalkboards and dry erase boards, and anything else that helps them to visualize answers in a hands on way.


These learners get the most from hearing information. Noises and the cadence of lectures can affect how much they retain in a classroom setting. Sometimes auditory learners will put their study guides to song, and will use rhymes to trigger their memory. Important classroom tools for these individuals include recording devices, music, and other sounds that trigger a response from them. In an online setting, auditory learners can take full advantage of their study tools.

Language Oriented

These learners get the most from words. Written and spoken words resonate with them, and they have an incredible capacity to associate language with meaning. They are able to create information from hearing and reading words, and to commit this to memory. They rely on textbooks and conversation to retain information.

Kinesthetic Learners

These people learn primarily through touch. Kinesthetic learners have a notoriously tough time in classroom settings, as they often need to be up and physically involved with an activity. Sitting and listening or reading will not be an effective teaching method for them. Online learning gives them a chance to become physically involved with their environment while in class at home.


These individuals have an uncanny ability to understand the way that things work. They generally have an aptitude for mathematics, and they make associations based on logical sequences. They enjoy taking notes, and taking their time when considering difficult problems.

Social Learners

These people learn best in groups where they are able to bounce information off of others. They need this feedback in order to understand and retain information.

Solitary Learners

These learners retain the most when by themselves.

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