Oh. Since I'm asking so many Hacker Schoolers for their engineering learning styles, it seemed only fair to post my own.



Text-accessible version: For each of the 4 axes, I am almost on the extreme edge one side. Specifically, I am very active (not reflective), very intuitive (not sensing), very visual (not verbal), and very global (not sequential).

It's interesting to reflect on how these results may be skewed by other factors -- for instance, am I a visual learner because I'm also profoundly deaf? Is there some alternate-universe hearing-Mel who soaks in audiobooks and lectures? I certainly love reading, and am a fluent writer and improvisational speaker, so it's not that I'm unable to navigate verbal information... it's just harder, although I don't think I can dissect my hearing from any innate preference I might have with an undamaged cochlea.

It's also interesting to see what axes I have and haven't been able to stretch past my preference on. As noted above, my visual preference hasn't kept me from being extremely fluent with the verbal end of the spectrum; the visual-verbal axis is one I feel I can shuttle freely across with little trouble (except when it relates to being deaf -- once I can perceive the words, I'm fine).

The active/reflective spectrum is more of a stretch -- impulse control and careful checking are a constant challenge for me (and ADHD doesn't help), but it is often doable for short spurts with grueling, deliberate effort, partly because I have a clear idea of what "reflective" looks like and can therefore force myself to masquerade as such if needed. But it is absolutely a masquerade, and one that wears me down quickly.

I don't think I know how to be anything other than intuitive. My brain makes connections no matter what I do. However, it makes connections so darn well that I also love a sensor's concrete examples (possibly because they often use physical/visual artifacts) because it's easy for my brain to generalize from case studies to high-level topics and theories. This means I can function in an environment designed for sensors, but I can't masquerade as a sensor the way I can masquerade (poorly, and with great effort) as a reflective person.

It's a similar thing with being global; I am definitely strongly global and cannot pretend to be sequential, but I've learned to function in a sequential world by reading ahead, devouring alternative resources, piecing together bits into my own big picture, asking question after question after question (as an active learner) until I have the bits and pieces that I need. This also reflects the way I recreate auditory data -- I get bits and snatches, then piece them together into whole sentences and conversations (and it usually works, sort of). I piece together auditory data -- and at a broader level, conceptual/intellectual information on topics I'm learning -- the same way the normal human visual cortex stitches together a full-color, high-definition scene from the brief glimpses of our eyes' tiny, lossy sensors as they saccade across the landscape...

But that's another blog post for another day.