Unit 13: Learner characteristics

08 May

While we are learning a second language we are influenced by some very important factors, in this unit there were described four factors :

  1. Learning style
  2. Learning strategies
  3. Maturity
  4. Past language learning experience

In the first stage: Learning styles, we saw that there are different kinds of learning for each student. These are the ways each person decides to study in order to memorize or remember things. There are nine kind of learning styles, however the most commons are three: Visual, Auditory and Kinaesthetic.

In the second stage: Learning strategies, we learned that there is a huge bunch of these learning steps, some of them are : repeating words, doing flash cards, paraphrasing, recording yourself, etc.

These strategies are the ways that learners choose and use to learn language. It helps them to identify what they need.

In the third stage: Maturity, we can notice how much it could affect learning process, because children, teenagers and adults would learn in different ways. Each group needs to be taught in a different way.

In the fourth stage: Past language learning experience, we saw how much it could matters. When learners have a past language learning experience, a new learning one could be hard for some of them. For example, if there is  an adult, who has been learning during many years only by writing, then when he comes back to school and now the learning has changed, it is by reading, he may or not may like this change. That’s why is so important teachers of adults (or teenagers) need to be aware of how their learners have learned and their level of language, motivation and personality.

How as teachers we can find out our learner’s characteristics?

  • Asking
  • Observing
  • Giving questionnaires
  • Asking at the end of a lesson if the liked the activities done in class and why
  • What different ways they might like to work

We can also train learners to become aware of and use different learning strategies, which is called learner training.

Now let’s see part of these characteristics. In the next activity you will only have to fill the gaps, however there are only three of these steps leaving out the last one on the list.

Moreover, you can find out your learning style in this link!


(The information was taken from the TKT book)
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Posted by on 08/05/2012 in UNIT 13


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