A comparative study of learning patterns of secondary school, high school and college students

This study aims to examine the similarities and differences in learning patterns amongst secondary school, high school and college students

Yu Song; Jan D. Vermunt

2020

Scholarcy highlights

  • A learning pattern is conceptualized as “a coherent whole of learning activities that learners usually employ, their beliefs about learning and their learning motivation, a whole that is characteristic of them in a certain period of time”
  • Findings show that the three groups of students were significantly different in their adoption of learning patterns; the dimensionalities of learning patterns observed in secondary school and high school students were similar, but were different from those of college students; these students’ learning patterns differed from each other in relation to personal characteristics, but tended to have similar strong relationships with parents’ education level and parents’ jobs
  • This study showed that the Inventory of Learning Styles worked well with secondary school students, high school students and college students
  • The ILS was used primarily in higher education, while alphas reported were low when tested on secondary school students
  • Compared to the mean scores reported in previous studies, the learning patterns adopted by students in mainland China were generally different from those adopted in Hong Kong or Indonesia, they shared similarities with Venezuelan students in terms of cognitive processing strategies and conception of learning, and with students in the Netherlands in terms of regulation strategies
  • Simi­ larly, gender was significantly related to most scales of learning patterns for high school samples except for intake of knowledge, use of knowl­ edge, personally interested orientation and vocation-directed orienta­ tion
  • The empirical findings show that these three groups of students differ in their adoption of learning patterns; di­ mensionalities of learning patterns observed in secondary school and high school students are similar, but are different from those of college students; these students’ learning patterns differ from each other in relation to personal factors, but tend to have similar strong relationships with parents’ education levels and parents’ jobs
  • The main variability lays in the use of learning strategies, with students from the higher education sector showing a higher tendency to adopt various cognitive processing and regulation strategies, while at the same time being more likely to be characterized with the meaning-directed pattern than those from lower sectors

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