Learning Modalities

When sharing information, the medium makes a difference.

When you're trying to teach, the medium you use matters. Sharing information visually can be interpreted and remembered differently from information you share via audio or text.

This is the reason that BJJ Mental Models is a podcast: by using an audial medium, we're forced to make sure we really understand and clarify our concepts because we can't just say, "watch what we do and copy it."

As an instructor, it's your responsibility to consider that some lessons may be better communicated - or learned from different angles - if taught through a different medium.

Although not exhaustive, below are a list of common ways information can be transmitted:

  • Visual: Learning by watching and observing.
  • Audial: Learning by hearing and listening.
  • Kinetic: Learning by moving and doing.
  • Deductive: Learning by thinking things through.

You'll probably get the best results by using a combination of learning styles.

Learning modalities are different from the concept of "learning styles:" the notion that some people learn better via visuals, audio, etc. Be aware that the myth of "learning styles" is not backed by science. The idea that different people have different "learning styles" has been debunked. That said, I've found that certain concepts are easier to illustrate or teach via different mediums. That's what we mean when we talk about learning modalities.


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