A Student's Brief Overview of the Analytical/Sequential Learning Style
An overview of analytic/sequential learners, who prefer linear steps that logically follow each other and prefer working on projects in small chunks.
by Katharine Hansen, Ph.D.
Analytical/Sequential learners prefer linear steps that logically follow each other and prefer working on projects in small chunks. They can discern details but often have trouble seeing the big picture.
Class Selection for Analytic Learners
Analytical/Sequential learners will thrive in classes that are always taught in a sequential manner, such as math, science, history, and languages. If you hear of a professor who jumps around and does not follow a logical order in presenting material, you may want to avoid him or her.
In-Class Strategies for Analytic Learners
- Sit in the front of the class so you won't be distracted by student activity in front of you.
- Prepare for frustration when others in a very sequential class, such as math, don't catch on as quickly as you do. You may also become frustrated in discussion classes in which many opinions are expressed and arguments reach an emotional pitch. Learn to let these frustrations roll off your back.
- Ask your professor for clear, step-by-step guidelines if instructions are unclear. Also ask if you are not clear on the goal you are expected to achieve with a project.
- Ask your professor to fill in gaps if the linear progression of a concept seems to be missing some steps: "How did you get from A to B?"
- Categorize information as you take lecture notes.
Study Strategies for Analytic Learners
- Study in quiet, well-lit environments.
- Highlight or underline key points in your reading.
- Sometimes you may have to force yourself to see the big picture. Try not to get too bogged down in details.
- Pace yourself in tests because your natural inclination is to not move on until you've finished a task. Sometimes you must move on to complete the rest of the exam.
- Create outlines, timelines, and diagrams as study aids.
- Turning study materials into puzzles and games will help you learn concepts.
Discover more about learning styles in our article, What's Your Learning Style -- and How Can You Make the Most of It?
Questions about some of the terminology used in this article? Get more information (definitions and links) on key academic terms by going to our College Success Glossary.
Katharine Hansen, Ph.D., is an educator, author, and blogger who provides content for EmpoweringSites.com, including MyCollegeSuccessStory.com. Katharine, who earned her PhD in organizational behavior from Union Institute & University, Cincinnati, OH, is author of Dynamic Cover Letters for New Graduates and A Foot in the Door: Networking Your Way into the Hidden Job Market (both published by Ten Speed Press), as well as Top Notch Executive Resumes (Career Press); and with Randall S. Hansen, Ph.D., Dynamic Cover Letters, Write Your Way to a Higher GPA (Ten Speed), and The Complete Idiot's Guide to Study Skills (Alpha). She curates, crafts, and delivers compelling content online, in print, on stage, and in the classroom. Visit her personal Website KatharineHansenPhD.com or reach her by e-mail at kathy(at)astoriedcareer.com. Check out Dr. Hansen on GooglePlus.