How Will the Kolb Inventory of Learning Help You As a College Student?

People with diverging and accommodating learning styles like interacting with others to learn.
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Based on Carl Jung’s personality types, the education theorist David Kolb’s Learning Styles Inventory (LSI) can help you to discover your individual learning-style preference. You can use that knowledge to identify majors and learning strategies that align well with your strengths and interests. The four learning styles include diverging (creative), assimilating (intellectual), converging (practical), and accommodating (social).

1 Diverging

If you strongly agree that you are a social person who likes to look at issues from multiple perspectives and find creative solutions to problems, you may be a diverger. Not surprisingly, divergers find professions in the arts and humanities -- such a choreography and literary scholarship -- highly engaging and satisfying. In a 2007 study, David T. Schaller and his coauthors found that adult creative learners prefer to learn by collaborating and actively seeking out multiple perspectives. Sociable, open-minded and reflective, divergers can improve concentration and learning by forming study groups to share differing views about and elaborate upon concepts taken from lectures and texts.

2 Assimilating

If you like theorizing and thinking things through before you act, you may be an assimilator. Assimilators tend to do well in information and science careers and prefer being alone with their own thoughts to interacting with others. Adult intellectual learners enjoy directly researching and synthesizing information from a variety of print or online sources. Reflective and analytical, assimilators can improve concentration and learning by individually researching and logically reorganizing or mapping concepts and information gathered from group discussions and hands-on or service learning projects.

3 Converging

If you are practical minded and decisive, you may be a converger. Convergers find careers that involve tackling technological challenges --such as software development and laboratory work-- appealing. Adult practical learners like applying theories and concepts in useful ways to solve real-world problems. As thinkers and doers, convergers can improve concentration and learning by exploring practical ways to apply theoretical and abstract concepts through informal or formal experimentation.

4 Accommodating

If you are a social, intuitive and adventurous person who enjoys taking risks, you may be an accommodator. Social and active fields--such as marketing and counseling, appeal to accommodators. Adult social learners enjoy learning activities that involve collaboration, inquiry and experimentation. Sociable and adventurous, accommodators can improve concentration and learning by working with others on assignments and by experimenting with new and different ways of completing their work.

Anthony Owens taught language arts at secondary institutions from 1999 to 2004 and has been teaching writing and literature at post-secondary institutions since 2010. He holds a Master of Education in instruction and learning from the University of Pittsburgh and a Master of Fine Arts in literature and creative writing from Bennington College in Vermont.