ERIC Number: ED403036
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Oct
Investigating Learning Preferences with Elementary School Students.
Rizza, Mary G.; And Others
To facilitate learning, teachers often employ varied teaching strategies and activities to accommodate different learning style preferences in students. This study explored elementary school students' preferences for learning environments, providing a pilot validation of the 40-question "If I Were in Charge of the Class" learning preference questionnaire for elementary students. Subjects were 481 third through fifth graders; the questionnaire, previously subjected to an analysis of content validity, was administered to measure four dimensions: teacher-directed instruction, student-directed inquiry, independent study, and group work. Exploratory factor analysis revealed that the questionnaire assessed three factors associated with learning preferences: teacher-directed activity, student-initiated activity, and group activity. These empirically-derived factors were very similar to three of the original factors proposed on the basis of the content validation. The one exception related to independent study items, which were included in teacher-directed and student-initiated activities. (The proposed distinction made between choice and context was not observed in this study's data.) Subject to further testing and refinement, this questionnaire may be used by teachers to assess the nature of activities that their students prefer, providing guidance in overall categories but flexibility in the use of specific learning activities. (Contains 11 statistical tables and 7 references.) (EV)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Conference of the Northeastern Educational Research Association (27th, Ellenville, NY, October 1996).