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NCJ Number: 83341 Find in a Library
Title: Overview of Research on Individual Learning Style and Its Implications for the Instruction of Delinquent Youth
Journal: Journal of Correctional Education  Volume:33  Issue:1  Dated:(March 1982)  Pages:22-26
Author(s): R B Hodges
Date Published: 1982
Page Count: 5
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Research on the specialization of the hemispheric functions of the brain and its effects on individual learning styles is presented to inform educators in correctional settings about the need for more than one instructional strategy for delinquent youths.
Abstract: Substantial research supports the belief that certain cognitive skills are related to different hemispheres of the brain. The cognitive style of individuals with left hemisphere dominance appears to be best suited for an analytical, logical mode of instruction that emphasizes the auditory and verbal processing of materials for which words are the most appropriate tool. In contrast, right hemisphere-dominant individuals appear to be holistic learners who process information simultaneously rather than in succession. For these individuals, instructional strategies which emphasize visual and spatial approaches may produce maximal achievement. Nearly all public school instructional strategies emphasize verbal and analytic skills, despite research indicating that disadvantaged persons are more likely to be spatial and holistic learners. Delinquents are often forced to remain in academic programs in which they have little chance of succeeding because they cannot master the verbally based curriculum. Several studies have indicated that delinquents are more apt to be visual and spatial learners than verbal and analytic learners. Educational strategies are needed to meet the academic needs of delinquents in the shortest period of time. However, most educational programs for institutionalized delinquents use the typical instructional approaches used in the public schools. Although definitive research on the effects of alternative instructional approaches on delinquents does not exist, the available research supports an approach oriented to the individual's dominant learning style. Such an approach would capitalize on the student's strengths to ensure maximum learning efficiency. The indeterminate time periods of incarceration necessitate approaches which will have maximum impact in the shortest time period. Forty-nine references are listed.
Index Term(s): Inmate academic education; Juvenile delinquency factors; Learning disabilities; Remedial education
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