Understanding the Auditory Learning Style

Learning by Hearing

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"Auditory learner" is a phrase used to describe students who tend to retain information more thoroughly when the information is reinforced through sound. Auditory learning methods could include anything from using musical notes to memorize lists, to using voice recordings or chants to memorize history terms.

Students with strong auditory learning preferences may prefer listening class lectures over reading assigned segments of a difficult text. They may struggle to understand a chapter that covers a complex topic, but then experience a full understanding as they listen to the same information as it is delivered through a class lecture.

An auditory learner may benefit from using the speech recognition tool available on many PCs and on cell phones. 

Auditory learners may have a knack for ascertaining the true meaning of someone's words by listening to audible signals like changes in tone. When memorizing a phone number, an auditory learner will say the numbers out loud and then remember how the series of numbers sounded to recall it. If this sounds familiar to you, you might be an auditory learner!

You may be an auditory learner if you are someone who:

  • Likes to read to self out loud.
  • Is not afraid to speak in class.
  • Likes oral reports.
  • Is good at explaining.
  • Tends to repeat things a few things as you listen to another person speak.
  • Remembers names.
  • Notices sound effects in movies.
  • Enjoys music.
  • Is good at grammar and foreign language.
  • Reads slowly.
  • Follows spoken directions well.
  • Can't keep quiet for long periods.
  • Enjoys acting, being on stage.
  • Is able to memorize lines for a skit easily.
  • Is good in study groups.

Auditory Learners Can Benefit from:

  • Using word association to remember facts and lines.
  • Recording lectures.
  • Using the recording feature of a cell phone to memorize lists and terms.
  • Watching videos.
  • Repeating facts with eyes closed.
  • Participating in group discussions.
  • Using audiotapes for language practice.
  • Taping notes after writing them.

Worst Test Type:

Reading passages and writing answers about them in a timed test.

Best Test Type:

Auditory Learners are good at writing responses to lectures they've heard. They're also good at oral exams. What kind of learner are you?