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Learning Styles: Social-Interpersonal

Explanations and strategies for different types of learning styles.

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Are you a Social learner?


If you are a social learner:

  • you communicate well with people, both verbally and non-verbally
  • people listen to you, they ask you for advice
  • you are sensitive to their motivations, feelings or moods
  • you listen well and understand other's views
  • you might enjoy mentoring or counselling others
  • you prefer learning in groups or classes
  • you like to spend time one-on-one time with a teacher
  • you learn by bouncing your ideas and thoughts off other people and listen to how they respond
  • you prefer to work through issues, ideas and problems with a group

Image courtesy (Accessed 19 Mar 2013)

Strategies for learning

Strategies for the social learner

  • Try to involve other classmates in your learning process as much as possible and when appropriate. Realize that this may not only help you, but them as well.
  • Studying in a group can help you understand things better than perhaps you could on your own.
  • A classmate may phrase something even better than the teacher did.
  • The energy and accountability that the group can provide can be a real plus.
  • However, recognize that groups can often be distracted from the task at hand just by one or two persons in the group.
  • Often groups can waste quite a bit of time with "socializing" that is not connected to learning.
  • If you are studying with a group, plan to take frequent breaks to allow for informal and off-the-topic discussions. Then get back on task as quickly as possible.
  • Form an online study group through social media, group chat, discussion boards (Accessed 19 Mar 2013)

Interpersonal Learner

You Are an Interpersonal Learner

Your mantra: I understand what you mean.

Interpersonal learners thrive on social interaction. Friends often ask you for advice because you are understanding and in tune with the people around you and their motives, emotions, perspectives, and moods.

Your ability to manage relationships helps you understand situations and take a leadership role when necessary. You enjoy teaching and sharing your thoughts.

Careers that require insight and the ability to read what someone else is thinking or feeling -- such as teaching, psychology, or sales -- would be a great match for those with interpersonal intelligence.

Tips for the way you learn:

  • Give and receive feedback.
  • Talk out problems.
  • Work on large-group projects so you can use your social abilities to divide up tasks and understand all aspects of the project.
  • Be a part of active learning through mentoring, tutoring, or an apprenticeship. This activity will reinforce your own knowledge or abilities.