Learning styles refer to the different techniques and ways people employ or use while acquiring knowledge or perusing their studies. The styles affect learners in different ways and got certain implications, either positive or negative, for their understanding. Learners decide on the type of the learning style they deem fit (Pashler, Rohner & Bjork 2008). People require the approach that enables them to comprehend things faster and to retain the learnt information for a longer period of time without forgetting. For example, learners may employ the following types of learning styles they may find favourable for their studies: visual, verbal, social, solitary, and aural.
In visual learning, learners use pictures and images to help them understand concepts better. The use of pictures enhances longer retention of newly acquired facts and ideas. Individuals are also able to understand things better with less difficulties as they can attach meaning to what they see (Falola, Osibanjo & Ojo 2014). They employ most of their senses in this type of learning. However, this method may have negative impacts on learners when wrong pictures and images are used. Learners will not be able to quickly forget what they have learned, hence it affects their performances.
Another style of learning is verbal, where learners use words both in speech and writing. This slows down their understanding rate as people must carry out a lot of tasks during the learning process (Falola, Osibanjo & Ojo 2014). This approach may be time consuming as it requires a lot of time to comprehend a task.
There is also an aural learning style, where learners use both sound and music. This method is not recommended at all as it hinders understanding. Sounds and music are considered to be destructors because they affect learners’ concentration. This makes it hard to grasp information they strive to learn. In most cases, learners opt to listen to music and the sounds they may find pleasing instead of trying to learn and understand. The use of music and sounds is appropriate in certain fields, for instance, during music classes where it is necessary for better comprehension (Hawk & Shah 2007).
It is possible to use solitary learning style, when learners study individually and without any accompaniment, like music or sounds. In this case, people take short notes and fully concentrate as they selects the best environment for learning.
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Social learning is another style that presupposes that learners study in groups. This method is effective and appropriate as it facilitates exchange of ideas and knowledge among learners. It also contributes to the exchange of information. Learners using this style become teachers (Kolb 1983, p. 11). They inform others of what they know. This approach ensures better understanding of concepts since learners are able to retain what they learn from colleagues rather than from their teachers. This can be explained by the fact that in group discussions learners are able to ask questions about areas they do not understand, they can also make clarifications of unclear concepts. The relationship among learners in this style of learning is affectionate, hence they are open with each other. They are free to share their ideas without any fear or tension.
People learn using the learning styles they find appropriate. For example, if learners adopt a learning style that helps them to enjoy good fruits in terms of performance, application, and understanding, then it may be considered favourable. Honey and Mumford emphasize on the learning styles that enable learners to gain experience, reflect on what has been learnt, draw conclusions, and test their theories in the long run. They emphasize the fact that learners should not only aim at understanding but also at applying what they study. They should gain experience whereby they can reach their own conclusions concerning theories and hypotheses. They should also be able to test their theories and see what happens. A good learning style should have features recommended by Honey and Mumford (Keefe & Jerkins 1996).
The anticipated end results depend on the type or style of learning people use to carry out their studies. For instance, learners might aim at retaining the information for a long period of time (Hargreanes 2012, p. 13), and then they are required to apply the visual type of learning. In such a way, individuals use pictures and images to reinforce the learning process. Social learning can also be appropriate because students can exchange ideas and knowledge that improves their comprehension of the concepts.
Learning styles have certain impacts on learners. For example, they contribute to good performance in studies. Learners have the possibility to apply what they study, using the different learning approaches. In the case of visual learning, people can apply what they see in pictures and images. They retain the information for a long period of time due to the fact that the information is always fresh even at the time of examinations. Some learning styles, like solitary, are not time consuming as learners are not involved in many tasks. They intensely concentrate on learning because there are, as a rule, less factors that may distract them from learning attentively. People easily retrieve and apply what they have learnt without any problem. Learning styles, such as aural, may lead to poor performance as students do not sufficiently concentrate due to the distracting factors in form of sounds and music. When learners use these approaches, they may not be able to acquire profound knowledge as they understand less because of the lack of conducive learning environment (Falola, Osibanjo & Ojo 2014).
Benefits of Training
Training is very important for enhancing knowledge. That is why, individuals should strive very hard to employ different training methods. Training is associated with positive implications that boost the performance of learners as well as of the organisation that promotes it. Besides, training delivers positive effects to individuals, employees, the stakeholders, and the organization itself.
Training enables employees to acquire necessary skills and knowledge that may help them be more competitive in the job market. When employees are equipped with the desirable skills, they manage to compete favourably with others. In cases when workers are not trained, they will not have a chance of challenging potential rivals. They will not be able to get better jobs as they lack special expertise (Soni n.d.).
Training contributes to promotion of workers in an organization. This means an improved status as employees can exercise authority over others. The stuff are also be able to get a good pay as result of the acquired training. Training implies acquisition of additional skills and knowledge. When employees are promoted, they feel motivated to work and by doing so, they help in the achieving the goals and objectives expected by the organization. The general performance of the company is enhanced as well as its profit. Additional instructions and their consequences convince workers that they are valuable and that they have potential for further promotion in the organization (Anderson 2014, p. 28).
The fact that the world is dynamic and keeps on changing proves the idea that training empowers trainees with the necessary experience that enables them to adapt and respond swiftly to the changes that take place all the time. Trainees will be ready to embrace new changes on their way with less resistance. The organization can adapt to the changes without problems as well as it will invest in its employees by increasing their capacity. This approach also implies that the needs of the customers or consumers of the goods and services are catered for . This is the way for enhancing the performance of the organization and achieving success. Training prevents employees from being vulnerable to risks and uncertainties that are often prone to occur. Changes represent potential risks, hence employees should be prepared to adapt to them and avoid their adverse effects, like losing their job (Soni n.d.).
Training is generally cost-effective, especially when external trainers are hired. Internal training is less costly, hence the organization does not spend a lot to pay the instructors. The last variant is an incentive to the organization to improve its performance, using limited and cheap resources of its own personnel (Benefits of training your staff n.d.). The resources that could have been spent on external trainers can be converted into other productive activities of, like generation of more capital to increase efficiency and effectiveness of the operations.
In some instances, training also creates confidence and positive attitudes among trainees. Employees feel confident when it comes to the job market or when they are exposed to work with others. They gain confidence that they have the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively compete with others. They feel free to share their ideas with collogues as they are fully aware of what is required from them. This situation is really motivating; they do not feel odd as it would have been the case if they were not trained. Employees develop a positive attitude towards work and the organization as they know that they are equal to or better than their competitors. This positively impacts the performance and the success of both trainees and the organization (Anderson 2014, p. 74).
These are ways or techniques to carry out training among workers. It is the way how training is done to ensure attainment of good results, to be more precise, the goals and objectives of the organization. These approaches include induction training, on-the-job training, and the-off-the job training methods. Induction training methods are those that are used to train individuals who join the company or begin to play a new role. Employees and employers who start a particular job need to undergo some training in order to be competitive in their areas. They are supposed to be empowered with the required skills and knowledge that will enhance their performance as well as that of the entire organization (Anderson 2014, p. 82). Employers also need to be trained so that they can be good managers and decision makers. Those who begin with new work are also supposed to receive some training to improve their competitiveness as well as performance. Changes of roles and responsibilities are the main causes that may necessitate this type of training since individuals are exposed to areas they are not used to. They also face innovations and are expected to play roles that they have never played before. Therefore, training will be appropriate for such people because it motivates them to be fit and adapt to the changes they must embrace without much problems. This attitude will ensure that neither the performance nor the success of the organization are at risk (Keefe & Jerkins 1996).
Other methods of job training involve shadowing, guidance, coaching, mentoring, and computer based training. Mentoring involves training of individuals using experienced personnel. In this case, employees are exposed to or connected with the people, who are more experienced but work in the same organization or another one, in order to meet and exchange ideas. The employees also gain experience as a result of the training they get from their mentors. Guidance, on the other hand, involves training of trainees or employees during their regular performance at workplace to guide their conduct as well as improve it. It is meant to add more skills and knowledge that employees require to have to boost their performance plus that of the entire organization (Benefits of training your staff n.d.).
Shadowing is another method of training where trainees spend a lot of time with their instructors. They observe what the trainers do and try to copy them. This method is very effective as it enables employees to acquire extra skills that they would not have been able to achieve if they were trained by people who were not experts in certain fields. Consequently, they have all the necessary knowledge and can work without any supervision. Trainees are also asked to retrain other workers of their organization, which reduces costs of production as it is not necessary to spend money on training activities held by the external trainers.
Coaching is done to improve the existing skills and knowledge of employees or trainees. It ensures that the skills do not fade or get lost (Soni n.d.). Correspondingly, the competitiveness of trainees is enhanced and they can effectively compete with others in the job market.
Computer based training is another training method when employees are trained using computers. They are instructed and asked questions via computers, and they are expected to answer according to what they have learned. The questions are meant to test their capacity with regard to what they have acquired. When the questions are well answered, then it implies that the trainees are well equipped with the expected skills. However, when they are not able to respond to well, then additional training is needed (Coffield et al. 2004).
Off-the-job training is a method that presupposes practice out of the workplace. It involves training of individuals in the educational facilities like universities, colleges, and other learning institutions. Trainees are not ready to be exposed to work that they are being prepared for, like undergraduates. Those who are employed and want to acquire more skills and knowledge may also undergo this type of training. It aims at increasing human capital in terms of skills and knowledge, which are vital factors that contribute to increased production and development (Pashler, Rohner & Bjork 2008).
Best Training Methods
Different people require different training methods that will help them in attaining better results, meeting the requirements of the organization, which means the set goals and objectives as well general success (Soni n.d.). The methods are expected to increase efficiency and effectiveness of the firm’s activities. For example, it concerns undergraduate trainees, new line managers, and experienced managers.
Undergraduate trainees require off-the-job training when they are trained in educational institutions that prepare them for their future work and provide them with all the necessary skills and know-how that will be required in the future. They e do not confront their areas of work, instead they are just prepared in advance to ensure that when they complete training, they do not face a lot of challenges (Soni n.d.). Such skills also bolster confidence of workers.
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New line managers are not yet completely acquainted with their areas of work, and they are subjects to new roles that they have not got used to. Therefore, they require the job training that will enable them to acquire the needed expertise (Ulrich 2013, p. 117). They will depend on a lot of coaching that can help them improve their proficiency. Experienced managers can also be trained using on-the-jobs training methods, like shadowing and mentoring. Through shadowing, they will be able to interact and spend plenty of time with experts in their fields. They will be trained appropriately by trainers who will impart the needed prowess that later enables employees to carry out their management duties effectively. Managers will be able to make rational decisions that help in enhancing and improving the performance and success of the organization. They can also be trained through mentoring, which means that mentors are more experienced than managers themselves. In such a way, executives have the opportunity to gain additional skills that may be very useful to employees, the organization as well as the community at large (Dunn & Price 2013, p. 103).
There is one training design that draws attention to the fact that training should follow systematic steps to facilitate better achievement of results (Falola, Osibanjo & Ojo 2014). For example, the training programme that concerns Green7co needs an objective. The objective will act as a guide to the entire process of training. There must be a clear explanation to why there is a need to train undergraduate trainees, new line managers, and experienced executives. The characteristics of potential trainees should also be clearly defined as they will be the ones to drive the organization towards attainment of the stipulated goals and objectives. In this context, the parties have been defined. After the identification of trainees, it is important to look for the necessary resources to facilitate the training process. Selection of the right training program will be appropriate after acquiring the necessary resources. Fixing the schedule is also mandatory because it will assist in allocating the resources, like time of every training activity. In this case, it is necessary to provide a schedule of two-day-period. Then comes the time to initiate the plan of action by carrying out the actual training as organizers have to abide the vital requirements (Beere et al. n.d.).
In summary, proper learning styles, training methods and techniques should be adopted so as to bring good results to the organization. The reason for such instructions may be explained by the fact that the trained staff have the confidence to do whatever is required, according to the requirements of their job and industry. In addition, the organization may use the best form of training, which is the most convenient and cost effective, to increase profitability. Moreover, the learning style must be appropriate to workers to help them comprehend the issues at the workplace, which leads to the high performance.