Different Learning Styles

Student Learning Styles in an Online
Distance Learning Class and an Equivalent On-Campus Class

Students who enrolled in the distance education class were significantly more Independent learners than students in the equivalent on-campus class. Students enrolled in the equivalent class were significantly more Dependent learners than the distance group.

On-Campus Students Learning Style:

On-campus students displayed collaborative tendencies that were positively related to their needs to be competitive and to be good class citizens. Thus, on-campus students appeared to favour collaborative styles to the extent that it helped them to obtain the rewards of the class.

In the equivalent on-campus group, significant positive correlations were found between the Collaborative learning style and the Competitive and Participant styles. That is, on-campus students who were collaborative also tended to be competitive and participatory in the classroom. Finally, a positive correlation between the Competitive and Participant styles of learning also was observed. Students who tended to compete also were "good classroom citizens" and were more willing to do what the teacher wanted them to do.

The traditional class students had collaborative tendencies that were related to their needs to be competitive, and to be good classroom citizens. In other words, they were interested in collaboration to the extent that it helped them to compete favourably in the class, and to meet the expectations of their teachers.

Online Students Learning Style:

Student success in distance learning classes may ultimately depend on understanding the learning style characteristics of the students who enrol.

Online students were willing and able to embrace collaborative teaching styles if the instructor made it clear that this was expected, and gave them form and guidance for meeting this expectation. Online students appeared to be driven more by intrinsic motives and clearly not by...