Siddharth Raghavan, MD* and Sean LaVine, M.D., Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine, Long Island Jewish Medical Center, New Hyde Park, NY

Meeting: Hospital Medicine 2017, May 1-4, 2017; Las Vegas, Nev.

Abstract number: 41

Categories: Education, Innovations Abstracts

Background: Among learners, preferred styles of learning vary based on the individual. These learning styles are influenced by a number of factors that play a role in how well the learner is able to interpret the material with which he or she is being presented. The Visual Aural Read/write Kinesthetic (VARK) learning questionnaire is a validated tool that has been used to identify and categorize preferred learning styles, specifically defined as preferred modes of accepting information. VARK analysis stratifies participants into preferred learning modalities.  Some learners have a single preferred modality.  Others have more than one preferred learning style (multimodal).

Purpose :This study sought to ascertain the preferred learning modalities of hospitalists using the VARK questionnaire in an effort to potentially tailor future teaching strategies to these learners.

Description: We conducted an anonymous survey of day hospitalists at Northwell Health Long Island Jewish Medical Center using a paper version of the VARK questionnaire. A demographic sheet to assess preferred learning modality among hospitalists and perceived resident learning modality was included along with the questionnaire. Twenty-six of thirty-four day hospitalists completed the questionnaire (77% response rate). Results were tabulated and analyzed by the VARK Research Service using the VARK Research Algorithm. Sixteen of twenty-six participants (62%) showed a preference for a single modality. The most common preferred modality was Visual (46%), followed by Aural (8%), Read/Write (4%), and Kinesthetic (4%).  Ten of twenty-six respondents (38%) showed a multimodal preference. Nine of these respondents (90% of multimodal learners; 35% of all participants) were classified as VARK Type I learners, meaning they have 2, 3, or 4 almost equal preferences in their VARK score.


Hospitalists have a variety of preferred learning modalities. Most hospitalists surveyed (62%) did have a single modality preference.  However, given the variety of learning styles present among hospitalists, a multimodal approach to presenting information to hospitalists for learning should be employed. A combination of Visual (graphic), Aural (heard or spoken), Read/Write (information displayed as words), & Kinesthetic (experiential or practice) modes should all be used to promote successful hospitalist learning.

To cite this abstract:

Raghavan, S; LaVine, S . ASSESSMENT OF HOSPITALIST LEARNING STYLE PREFERENCES. Abstract published at Hospital Medicine 2017, May 1-4, 2017; Las Vegas, Nev. Abstract 41. Journal of Hospital Medicine. 2017; 12 (suppl 2). Accessed February 27, 2020.

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