Learning Styles And Satisfaction In Distance Education

Darren C. WU

Although complex, controversial, and contradicting, learning styles is highly influential. Distance education (DE) has experienced tremendous growth in the last few decades. The popularity of learning styles and DE necessitates research. This correlational research study was conducted to determine if there is any evidence to incorporate learning styles in DE. The following is the research question for this study. Are students’ learning styles based on the visual, auditory, tactile model correlated to satisfaction of course format in an online undergraduate course? The participants of this study were students enrolled in three sections of the Contemporary Worldviews course at a private higher education institution (HEI). Learning styles were determined by a variant of the visual, auditory, read/write, and kinesthetic (VARK) framework. Satisfaction of course format was determined from one composite question with responses based on a Likert scale. The response rate was 53.5%. Statistical analysis determined that learning styles was not correlated to satisfaction of course format in this current study. There are implications from this study that curriculum can be designed for a single course that leaves students highly satisfied. Educators should saturate DE courses with as much variance as feasible given technology and cost limitations to account for possible learning style differences.

KEYWORDS: Distance Education, Learning Styles, Satisfaction, VARK.

DOI : 10.17718/tojde.31724