Guest Author - Elizabeth Stuttard
Have you determined that you are an intrapersonal solitary learner? If so then you have a very good sense of who you are as a person and can use that knowledge to increase your success in your learning activities. Online learning is one of the best ways for you to use your strengths in your learning. You do not need to sit in a classroom surrounded by other students when you would rather be on your own in a nice quiet environment. The following suggestions will help you make the most of your learning strengths.
As mentioned above, you enjoy working alone, so you should find a place to work and study where you are comfortable, where you will not be interrupted, and where it will be quiet. You will have good concentration in these conditions. As well you would have the space both mentally and physically to connect your learning to your personal life. Intrapersonal learners like to connect their learning with their personal lives and it helps you to absorb and understand the knowledge and skills that are being learned. In addition, you should connect your learning to previously learned materials and uncover the similarities and differences between them. This will help you understand and remember the concepts and data in your courses.
You enjoy journal writing so keep a journal just for your course. You can include all your thoughts and feelings about the content and your learning of it. It is a good place to contemplate and clarify the information you have been learning. Write out the strengths and weaknesses in the solutions given for problems and consider how they relate to what you already know. Include personal information about the subject such as the motivation behind research that has been done or the personal challenges that a writer/musician/theorist had to overcome to attain their accomplishment. Donít forget to make notes on what is working for you personally in the particular learning situation so that you can use the same methods throughout the course and possibly in future courses too. If you have to work on group projects, you could possibly keep the journal for the group to summarize what has been done or decided or discovered. Another option is to write critiques for the group. These types of contributions make use of your strengths and are very beneficial for the whole group.
Another suggestion for increasing your success in your distance learning is to set your goals for the course. Be very clear on why you have set each goal. Try to envision what your life might be like after you have reached those goals. As you proceed through the course, monitor how you are doing. Are you behind, right on track or do you need to change the goals? Do your goals match your beliefs and your values? This is a very important factor because you are aware of and need to be in tune with your inner feelings. If you like to use assertions, make and use ones that match the goals you have set.
You like to be original so working independently on projects gives you more opportunity to develop your creative ideas. Your love for working independently, doing research, and working on the internet, can all be combined when researching for your term papers or projects that are required for a course. Many of your strengths are combined in this type of assignment. For your learning style, the biggest problem you may have is trying to figure everything out for yourself rather than asking someone for help. This could be a huge waste of time for you even if you are successful. You may spend hours finding an answer that a classmate might be able to give you in less than a minute. This is my personal major learning style and I found that making use of the bulletin board was an excellent option in online courses. I could either ask the question there, and receive the answer the next day or often someone else who may have been a different type of learner had already asked the question. Either way, it could save you much time.
You can certainly be a very successful distance learner as a solitary learner or an intrapersonal learner. It is almost as if distance or online learning were made especially for you. Hopefully the above suggestions will help to make you even more successful. Since no one uses only one learning style completely, it is always necessary to use your less dominant style in some situations, so be sure to try to develop some of the qualities of all the learning styles to cover as many situations as possible and therefore do your very best learning.