Monthly Archives: March 2016

auditory learner

Multiple Intelligence Learning Styles: Auditory Learner

Part 1 of 8 in our Blog Series on Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences

An auditory learner has the greatest potential to learn new information when they hear it spoken out loud clealy using a high quality headphone found on Hotrate, versus just reading about something or watching it being demonstrated. Among the school-aged population, it is estimated that 30% have an auditory learning style. In this post we will go over the strengths of the auditory learner, as well as some strategies which complement the auditory learning style.

Auditory Learner: Strengths & Strategies

In general, auditory learners will remember 75% of the information they hear during a lesson at school. Since they learn best through spoken information, auditory learners enjoy participating in classroom discussion. Due to understanding information best when it’s heard out loud, auditory learners typically do not have to be told information more than once in order to recall it. Auditory learners also excel at delivering verbal information in this form on presentations and speeches.

If your child is an auditory learner, here are some strategies you can practice with him or her:

  • Group Study: Encourage your child to study with friends so they can all discuss the information out loud.
  • Repetition: If your child is struggling to grasp certain bits of information, try having them read it out loud over and over again until it sticks.
  • Record: If your child has a device capable of recording sound, such as an iPod, have them record audio notes if important pieces of information so they can hear it out loud again when they need to.
  • Read: Reading is an important part of learning for any child, but for auditory learners it’s especially important for them to read out loud when possible.

In addition to these teaching strategies, it’s possible you may also have the school teachers work together with your child on strategies that best compliment his or her learning style. For example, if your child struggles with producing written reports, perhaps it can be arranged that your child produces an oral presentation on the subject to demonstrate their learning.

Struggles of the Auditory Learner

The most counterintuitive way to teach an auditory learner how to do anything is to present them with a set of written instructions and then telling them to follow it. It’s also challenging for auditory learners to be shown how to do something without being told what’s being done and why.

Auditory learners are naturally inquisitive; not shy to ask questions when something is not immediately understood. That means when assigning a task to someone with an auditory learning style you may have to explain ‘why’ something has to be done as well as telling them ‘what’ to do.

It may be a challenge to find somewhere with an appropriate noise level for auditory learners. Auditory learners are easily distracted when the setting they’re in is either too loud or too quiet. You may find your child is frequently commenting on the noise level when studying or completing homework.


If you would like to learn more about your child’s learning style, we encourage you to have them try some of our free games which explore the full range of a child’s multiple intelligences.

The theory of multiple intelligences was developed in 1983 by Dr. Howard Gardner, professor of education at Harvard University. It suggests that the traditional notion of intelligence, based on IQ testing, is far too limited. Instead, Dr. Gardner proposes eight different intelligences to account for a broader range of human potential in children and adults.

This is part 1 in our blog series covering all 8 of Howard Gardner’s proposed 8 intelligences.

what is high functioning autism

What is High Functioning Autism

When learning about and seeking information related to autism, you’ll inevitably run into the question of what is high functioning autism, and how is it different from classic autism? First of all, if you’re familiar with Asperger’s Syndrome, you already know something about high functioning autism — they now share the same diagnosis according to the DSM IV.

What is high functioning autism compared to classic autism has a lot to do with the development of language and social skills. A person with high functioning autism may demonstrate above average intelligence, and be perfectly adept at many things that a person with classic autism may not be able to grasp. Despite that being the case, the individual will struggle greatly when it comes to language and social interactions.

What is High Functioning Autism, and How is it Similar to Classic Autism?

Since high functioning autism and classic autism both involve difficulties with language and communication, it’s similarly difficult for children with these conditions to express how they feel and identify with others. Difficulty connecting with others is also accompanied by challenges with reading facial expressions and body language.

Like classic autism, people with high functioning autism may have trouble making or maintaining eye contact with other individuals, or expressing themselves non-verbally. People with high functioning autism usually tend to speak without much emotion or inflection to their voice, or may have an irregular speech pattern altogether.

Another trait shared between classic autism and high functioning autism is the inclination towards following strict schedules and routines. This is often coupled with an intense and/or obsessive interest with one specific subject. On one hand, they can talk one’s ear off about a subject that may not be interesting to the other person — but on the other hand they can become quite successful as bona fide experts in their field.

Finally, another of the most similar traits is an increased sensitivity toward external stimuli such as sound, taste, touch, smell, and so on. As an example, people with high functioning autism may have a particular aversion toward a food not because of how it tastes, but because of its texture. They may also show a greater than average interest in music because of their increased sensitivity to sound, or an intense dislike for certain sounds or loud noise in general.

What is High Functioning Autism, and How is it Different From Classic Autism?

One of the most defining differentiators between high functioning autism and classic autism, is that individuals with HFA tend to have above average intelligence with normal to superior IQ levels.

Despite their high level of intelligence, individuals with HFA may stand out as being awkward amongst their peers due to pronounced difficulties in understanding the concepts of social norms. As a result, well-intentioned individuals with HFA may often be misunderstood by others.

Due to the fact that children with HFA tend to function well in school academically, they may end up being misdiagnosed or not being diagnosed whatsoever. In addition, the difficulties in social interaction faced by those with HFA do not begin to manifest until later on life. As a result, children with HFA may not get the support they need at a young age compared to children with classic autism, since the symptoms are usually not observed until much later.

For more information about what is high functioning autism, we recommend you browse through some of the additional resources on our website.