Learning abilities

Subject: Learning abilities
From: Kim Redick <tscom009 -at- DUNX1 -dot- OCS -dot- DREXEL -dot- EDU>
Date: Tue, 9 Nov 1993 09:25:09 -0500

Bonni Graham writes...

> On Fred's note, screen captures are a great boon to the visual learner, as
> well as the non-native English speaker. We are supposed to be addressing
> different kinds of learning, right?

Good point. But screen dumps aren't the only ways we can help non-native
speakers etc. learn from documents. If we analyze an audience to determine
their level of ability, reading goals, and reading tasks, we can organize
and present information in ways that help them process it most effectively.

This is especially important when the audience has a wide distribution of
ability levels and goals. By developing an understanding how and why people
are reading the text, writers can apply design elements, graphics,
formatting, etc. that will aid more than one type of learner/user/reader.

I've found also found this to be true in teaching a Technical Writing
class. I have several non-native speakers and students in a wide variety of
engineering specialties. To help them, I use real life examples from their
disciplines (when I can find them), a little theory, and refer to specific
pages/sections in the book. I get a little redundant sometimes, but it's
worth it if I can reach a student through *their* learning channels.

.....Another 2 pennies.


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