We as humans possess the power to remember those which we have caught visually in our memory and that too for a longer period of time. You will always remember when teachers used to bring some visually appealing materials to demonstrate in class. Interestingly, knowledge and skill imparted by the help of those materials would have retained to date in our memories. Therefore, visual learning has proved as an important and effective process.
Referring to another example, if you have lost your keys at home and you have a tendency to close your eyes and imagine the location of your keys, this works every other time. This process always works for remembering things. This is how we realize the effect of visual images to remember things faster. It happens in day-to-day life.
What is Visual Learning?
Visual learning helps you to see the information to learn it. It captures the image of what it sees, based on spatial awareness, images, colour, brightness, or any other visual information. Therefore, the classroom is the best place for students to learn visually. Nowadays teachers adapt visual methods for teaching by using whiteboards, handouts, images, videos, presentations, etc for effective learning. Visual learners can boost their confidence and performance in school.
Visual learning strategies are being used more across the country. They can help you achieve and manage learning objectives. It helps you to think critically and develop skills such as problem-solving, decision making and better understanding. You can take up many activities for learning such as drawing, writing reports, games, flashcards, displays, photographs, posters, documentaries, OHP sheets, etc.
Benefits of Visual Learning
Visual content plays a very important part of human life. Visual learners account for around 65% of the population. Much research has been conducted to prove the effectiveness of visual learning. It is more appealing than hearing. Visual learners respond to information faster compared to textual information. Here, we will discuss why visual learning is so beneficial for learning.
According to Dr.Lynell Burmark, an education consultant, words are processed by our short term memory where we can only retain about seven bits of information, images; on the other hand, go directly into long term memory where they are indelibly etched.
Adding to this, one more study found that after three days, learners can retain 10-20 percent of information when written or spoken whereas 65 percent of visual information is retained.
Let’s look into some of the facts on how the information is stored in our memory.
Here are a few lists of the benefits of visual learning
#1 Virtual Learning Benefit – Better Learning Tool
Videos have a significant impact on the brain as they help to retain information for a longer period of time. It can capture the image faster than text. In comparison to reading from the textbook, visual learning helps you in self-study. Sometimes you don’t require the teacher to teach you a topic that can be done with video presentations. It improves your capacity to learn.
#2 Virtual Learning Benefit – Simplified Learning Process
It helps you to interact with teachers and eases your learning experience. You can learn complex topics in a simpler form. Just looking at the visual information, the complex topic can be understood for better learning outcomes. It includes various elements such as graphs, images and charts that are easily accessible.
#3 Virtual Learning Benefit – Emotional Stimulators
When visual images are linked to emotions in the human brain they are referred to as memories. That’s the reason where visual content or any images create long-lasting memories.
#4 Virtual Learning Benefit – Longer Retention Power
Visual learning helps you to store information for a longer period of time. It is said that videos and images are directly processed by long term memory. The visual learning increases retention by 29-42%. It helps you to process information primarily through visuals and improves your learning process. For example, when you are learning a topic that is explained with visuals, images and graphics for your exam which is supposed to be conducted after a month. You will be able to remember the whole concept even after a long period of time as it was captured in your memories through images.
#5 Virtual Learning Benefit – Accessibility
According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, learners from today’s world have an attention span of only 8 seconds, which makes it difficult for them to be engaged with the concept unless you make it interesting with visuals. Hence considering the shorter attention span, the teaching methods can be modified with respect to the student interest and for their better understanding.
#6 Virtual Learning Benefit – Cost-Effective
We all know that compared to any other teaching method, visual learning is very affordable. All it requires is an internet connection that is connected to a computer, laptop, or tablet. It does not allow you to spend money on books or any other reading materials.
You have to just browse whatever information you need to learn with a click on your devices. The information on the internet has a lot of visual images that explain the topic in a simple and easy way.
#7 Virtual Learning Benefit – Fun Element
We all know that classroom learning with only text and lectures seems to be boring and monotonous at times. Visual learning helps and engages you and your studies. It also improves concentration levels.
#8 Virtual Learning Benefit – Easy to learn
Virtual learning really eases the learning process with the help of video presentations for students of different IQ levels. It helps better interaction between students and teachers. The learning also engages you with materials.
#9 Virtual Learning Benefit – Motivates Students
It keeps you motivated throughout your learning process. You will be able to develop an interest in subjects that can help you in fetching good grades in exams. It will enable you to be focused and save you from other distractions.
Effective Strategies of Visual Learning
Visual learning is one of the effective learning methods for students. It focuses on learning through reading and watching rather than listening. There are different ways to learn through visuals such as images, videos, different colour themes, charts, maps, etc. You must understand what are the things required to see, understand and remember the information. Here are some strategies that can help you in better visual learning practice.
Visual Learning Strategies for Students
If you are a visual learner, you imagine things to remember any information. When teachers show you some kind of visual, the information is retained in your mind. As a student, it will help you perform well in your academics. You can integrate the strategies mentioned below for better learning outcomes.
- Use colour codes for notes, words, textbooks, etc. It will help in retaining the information in your mind
- Read images, diagrams, pictures, maps to help you retain the concept in your mind for long periods of time
- Prepare notes using different colour pens. It helps you to identify the topics easily.
- Highlight the points, headings, subheadings to organize notes.
- Watch informative videos for a better understanding of the subject and quick learning
- Organize the information that you want to learn in graphs, charts and tables. Excel sheets can help you in drawing charts and creating tables for a better understanding of the information.
- Draw mind maps for the topics you want to remember for a long time
- Prepare flashcards to remember small information related to your subjects.
- Draw images for the topics that are easy and simple to understand.
- Create images for the topics for easy understanding. You can draw pictures to remember things effectively.
- Use more of symbols for depicting any information for easy understanding
- Demonstrate the particular topics for better learning outcomes. Videos and images are better than words. In this case, practical knowledge can help you retain information for a longer period of time.
Visual Learning Strategies for Teachers
Visual learning helps students to retain information more effectively than any other method. You can use images, videos, charts, maps, documentaries, diagrams, etc for teaching students in the classroom. It is said that students with visual learning style excel in their academic performance. They will pay attention to your slides, whiteboards, powerpoint presentations, handouts, graphics, maps, charts, etc. You can implement the strategies mentioned below to grab the attention of students in the classroom.
- Deliver lectures with handouts, diagrams, images, maps, charts etc.
- Use colour themes in the presentation and handouts
- Provide written notes to the students
- Involve students in learning activities, assignments, group activities, etc
- Use videos and still images in your presentations
- Demonstrate the concepts with the help of plays, dramas, outdoor and indoor activities.
- Give more assignments from the syllabus
- Draw pictures to help them explain new concepts
- Show web pages with graphics, images, charts, etc related to your syllabus
- Avoid using large texts for teaching
- Storytelling will help in visualizing the concept
- Create flashcards with concepts and picture
- Use colour codes in paragraphs so that students can understand the topic
- Encourage your students to write
Visual Learning Strategies for Parents
You need to observe your child closely when he is learning. They should analyze what are the things that can make their child more interested in learning. Does your child learn better with visual images, stories, flashcards, videos, graphics ? or Does your child get bored with words and hearing lectures? If your child loves using flashcards, maps, images instead of listening then you have to follow certain strategies to develop your child’s learning experience.
- Use more images, videos, graphics to explain a particular topic
- Demonstrate subjects for example Maths with sketches blocks, cubes, etc
- Participate with your children in learning activities
- Storytell your children and give them time for visualizing the scene to understand the situation well. Use your hands and expressions to enact the scene.
- Allow them to create a model for the topic learned to know how much they have understood. They can create models from any waste materials found in the surroundings such as straw, waste cardboards, leaves, sticks, etc. And ask them to explain the topic.
- Break the complex topic into simpler ones for better understanding
- Give them books that have more pictures and play games such as pictionary, quiz, puzzles, etc
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