Applied Linguistics

Different types of learning strategies/memory/social/cognitive

Learning strategies

As the name suggests, this is about learning strategies, not teaching. That is, it would be more correct to call today’s post “Language learning strategies“, because learning is those language learning strategies that a student uses, at least in the classroom, at least during independent work. And if it sounds a little pompous, you can call it all learning habits, or – otherwise – methods of learning activity (oops, sorry, in my opinion, it turned out even more pompous than it was))). Learning strategies with types

Learning strategies are pretty fluid. In the process of learning a language, we all try different methods and techniques. Something works, some doesn’t; some methods we like (for example, putting a textbook under the pillow), some are tiring (doing grammar exercises). Other strategies for learning a foreign language make us feel uncomfortable (speaking with mistakes ), and with the third, we feel safe (being silent if you don’t know exactly what to say).

So over time, everyone develops their own preferences and personal strategies for learning the language. None of the studies published to date can say unequivocally that some learning strategies work and others don’t.

For example, Kolya likes to learn individual words with lists. My whole teaching person will protest against this method: I believe that the vocabulary of the English language is mostly phrases that are practiced in very different ways. But if the method of memorizing words with lists works for Kolya, it may be worth leaving him (Kolya) alone.

The teacher‘s task is to relax and have fun)) And also help his students understand what works in their particular case. And there is only one way – to give students the opportunity to try the whole arsenal of methods and techniques of work. Learning strategies with types

All learning strategies are usually divided into several groups:

  • memory
  • cognitive
  • compensation
  • metacognitive
  • affective
  • social

1-Memory strategies Learning strategies with types

All those techniques that help to remember and store new things in memory, as well as, if necessary, quickly extract from there. This includes:

Mental connections are, for example, a way of remembering new expressions in context.

The use of associations – pictures, images, sounds, sensations.

Regular repetition – looking through the material, composing new examples with expressions or grammatical constructions, hanging the right words around the apartment.

Reinforcement by action – for example, reinforcement of a new word with a gesture or body movement – by the way, this is the basis of the TPR – Total Physical Response method.

2-Cognitive strategies

Cognitive, thought-based learning strategies that help you understand, interpret and reproduce new phenomena in the English language. This includes:

Practice and repetition – for example, repetition of a new model or design, use in new contexts; performing exercises and assignments.

Analysis and comparison – analysis of a new expression: what words / components it consists of, what can be replaced with what and how to compose new phrases according to this model.

Knowledge structuring – your own way of writing notes or accompanying new material with visual clues; creation of presentations, tables and graphs – anything that makes it easy to record language material for later use and repetition. Learning strategies with types

3-Compensation strategies

Compensatory learning strategies that help the student to communicate and express their thoughts in English, despite the gaps in the language and the lack of any knowledge, specific words and structures. This includes:

Neat, informed guesses – for example, using non-linguistic clues in context .

Overcoming linguistic limitations – when a student replaces a necessary but unknown word with a synonym, paraphrases or explains in other ways (circumlocution).

4-Metacognitive strategies Learning strategies with types

Metacognitive strategies, namely the control of one’s own learning progress, its organization, planning and evaluation.

Setting goals and objectives – for example, know and be able to use 500 new expressions in three months; stay calm while communicating in English and not break out in cold sweats.

Tracking success according to predetermined criteria – what does it mean to “be able to use” new words; which means “calmness”. Have I already achieved this? How far have I come in this?

5-Affective strategies

Affective strategies (but not in the sense of a state of passion, which is known to be a mitigating circumstance))) are ways to control and manage your emotions, attitude to language and the learning process, and motivation. For example: Learning strategies with types

Ways to reduce your anxiety are to play music, joke.

Self-motivation – learned 10 new phrases – take a pie from the shelf.

Ways to deal with negative emotions are to share your feelings with the teacher or complain about the teacher to classmates. Learning strategies with types

6-Social strategies

Interaction methods and communication strategies. For example:

Asking questions and asking for clarification if you do not understand something, and not be silent – I’m sorry, I don’t get it; Could you clarify?

Ask a more advanced English user for help.

Development of empathy and intercultural communication and understanding skills

A successful learner differs from an unsuccessful learner not only in that one has effective working learning strategies and the other does not. Most often it is a matter of not knowing how to choose the right approach to:

  • specific task
  • aspect of language (grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation )
  • skill ( listening comprehension , reading, writing, speaking)
  • situations (loss of motivation, fatigue, embarrassment, etc.)

Drawing up an individual program Learning strategies with types

Note to the teacher: analyzing teaching strategies is another step in drawing up an individual program . It is very helpful to understand how your future student is used to learning and what learning habits (or lack of them) will have to deal with.

Before starting classes with a new student and before drawing up an individual program, it makes sense to find out how he used to learn, and then observe how effective his teaching methods are.

How? If you are already in the process – by observation, of course. And before the start of the course – I usually ask at the first interview:

Well, tell me about your metacognitive strategies and learning techniques?

Ha, well, no, of course, I don’t say THAT))) But like this – quite:

What memory strategies do you use?

How do you work with the new grammar? How do you understand new material? How do you keep records (cognitive)? Learning strategies with types

What do you do in a conversation if you don’t know the right word (compensation)?

How will you know you have achieved your goal? How do you plan your training? How and when do you do your homework (metacognitive)?

What do you do when the whole world is not affective?

What do you do if you do not understand the interlocutor? Do you ever need help? What are you doing then (social)?

You may have to help come up with new techniques and methods before the student, the poor thing, registers himself as “unteachable” and is completely disappointed in this your English))

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