Using Learning Styles and Personality Types to Predict Success of First Year StudentsÕ Didactic Scores from a Problem-Based Learning (PBL) DPT Program

Purpose : The purpose of the study was to examine 52 first-year DPT students in a PBL program and explore the relationship of various classroom assessments by student learning styles and personality types. StudentsÕ didactic test results were analyzed to determine if there was a preferred test assessment style for each type of learner. Is it possible to predict which students will perform best or those at risk for failure depending on their personality or learning style in a PBL DPT program?Description : Students in physical therapy programs strive to be successful in the classroom and the clinical setting. Programs use a variety of methods to assess student success before entering clinical rotations. Do different learning styles and personality types influence success on student assessments? Problem-Based Learning (PBL) challenges students to play an active role in their learning.Summary of Use : A one-way ANOVA revealed a statistically significant difference between True Colors Orange and Gold personality types and mean scores for the Triple Jump Assessment equal to 7.576 points (p = .034). No statistical differences were found between groups on the other two assessments (OSCE and written exams). No statistical differences between VARK learning styles were found on any student assessments (Triple Jump, OSCE, and written exams). These findings suggest that personality type may be more influential in student performance on program assessments than student learning styles.Importance to Members: For students new to PBL, we may be able to target those needing different types of strategies for optimal learning. This study examined the learning styles of 52 first-year students through two different methods using the VARK learning styles and the True Colors Profile personality. The examinations included: Multiple essay quiz (MEQ), Objective Structured Clinical Exam (OSCE), and a Triple Jump Exam which evaluates the ability of students to organize information, formulate hypotheses, identify learning objectives, and reformulate a patient case. This study suggests that more emphasis should be placed on personality type than learning style to facilitate success.

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  • Control #: 1718346
  • Type: Poster
  • Event/Year: CSM2014
  • Authors: Emily Calk, Amber Ferrand, Vanessa Oliva, Mariska Sanchez, Susan G. Klappa, Julie A. Thompson
  • Keywords: Learning styles|Personality types|Problem-based learning

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