ERIC Number: ED393607
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996-May
Hispanic-American Students and Learning Style. ERIC Digest.
Griggs, Shirley; Dunn, Rita
This digest identifies cultural values that may affect the learning processes of Hispanic-American students, reviews research on the learning styles of Hispanic-American students, and discusses the implications of this research for counseling and teaching Hispanic youth. One cultural value that is of paramount importance in most Hispanic cultures is family commitment. Other values and characteristics suggested by research are a greater inclination among Hispanic than Anglo adolescents to adopt their parents' religious beliefs and lifestyle; stereotyped sex roles; and more and earlier independence among Hispanic male adolescents than male adolescents of the general U.S. population. Several studies have compared students of various ethnic groups in terms of five categories of learning style. These studies suggest that: (1) cool temperatures and formal design are important for Mexican-American students (environmental learning style); (2) Mexican-Americans require a higher degree of structure than other groups (emotional learning style); (3) Mexican-American students prefer solitary learning less than Caucasian students (sociological learning style); (4) Latinos' strongest perceptual strength is kinesthetic (physiological learning style); and (5) Mexican-American students are more field dependent than are non-minority students (psychological learning style). There are several implications of this research for counseling and teaching Hispanic-American students. Schools can provide Spanish-speaking teachers and counselors. Group counseling with peers can be helpful for Hispanic adolescents with identity-related problems. Educators can address self-image problems of Hispanic-American students that may result from a rejection of their ethnicity by using interventions that celebrate cultural diversity. In general, counselors and teachers can be aware that Hispanic-Americans are a diverse group with differing customs and values. They should emphasize the learning style strengths of each individual and match instructional resources and methods to individual learning style preferences. (BC)
Descriptors: Cognitive Style, Counselors, Cultural Differences, Cultural Traits, Elementary School Students, Elementary School Teachers, Elementary Secondary Education, Family Environment, Field Dependence Independence, Hispanic American Culture, Hispanic American Students, Hispanic Americans, Mexican Americans, Physical Environment, Secondary School Students, Secondary School Teachers
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher; ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Elementary and Early Childhood Education, Urbana, IL.