Learning Styles & Personality Type: Visual, Auditory, Kinesthetic

One area that is often overlooked in typology circles is the relationship between learning styles and personality type.  In this article, I would like to briefly explore the visual, verbal, auditory, and kinesthetic learning styles, as well as their points of overlap with the cognitive functions.

Auditory, Kinesthetic, Visual-Spatial & Verbal Learning Styles

Historically, researchers have found it useful to delineate between visual-spatial learners and verbal learners. In fact, these are often suggested to be linked with sex differences, with males showing advantages in visual-spatial reasoning and women in verbal fluidity.

More recent studies have separated gifted visual-spatial learners into two distinct camps: spatial visualizers and object visualizers. Spatial visualization, in which males generally have a slight edge, involves the ability to mental rotate objects in three-dimensional space. Such individuals do well with mechanical reasoning and often excel in certain types of science and engineering. Object visualization, in which women tend to perform somewhat better, involves the ability to clearly recall the vivid colors, details, and images of faces, dreams, or scenes.  These individuals often make excellent visual artists.

Auditory (aural) learners often demonstrate strong verbal or musical aptitudes, as they more readily absorb the necessary elements of language or music.  Kinesthetic learners are your hands-on learners, excelling in tasks that required skilled, coordinated movements of the body.

Though I am unaware of any studies in this regard, we might hypothesize that predominantly kinesthetic and visual learners would use Extraverted Sensing (Se) as one of the functions in their “functional stack.” Se involves a tendency toward physicality, as well as attention to a breadth of external sensory data. Predominant auditory learners, by contrast, may well prefer Extraverted Intuition (Ne), since Ne involves the acquisition of abstract concepts or ideas from without. Moreover, Intuitive types may generally have an edge with regard to verbal learning, since language itself is abstract and symbolic.

Related Posts:

Personality Testing for Kids: Type & Learning Styles

Extraverted Intuition (Ne)

Extraverted Sensing (Se)

Personality Junkie Home


  1. Sussex says

    Oh well this is interesting. am visual spatial. Can rotate things in 3D mentally. I can also tell imme diately if a situation is going to succeed or fail based on the innate lack or presence of balance in the situation. I am in my 60’s now and have only ever met 2 other folk who can tell the balance thing. One is dead, the other lives in the next town over from me, unrelated. I believe I inherited the ability to discern balance from my father who was a rocket scientist. I have an extreme ability to gather disparate info and reach a conclusion very quickly. Daniel Pink calls it the “symphonic mind”. in his book, “A Whole New Mind”.

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