Learning preferences of caregivers of asthmatic children

Chitra Dinakar, Christina Adams, Alysa Brimer, Maria D. Silva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Background. People learn in different ways: visually, aurally, by reading/writing, and kinesthetically. In our clinic, we use color-coded Asthma Action Cards to educate our patients and their caregivers on asthma management. Our teaching is largely aural based, with the cards providing reading and visual stimulation and hands-on practice with devices offering kinesthetic stimulation. Objective. We sought to determine the learning styles of the caregivers of our asthmatic children. Methods. Caregivers in our Asthma/Allergy Clinic completed the Visual-Aural-Read/Write-Kinesthetic (VARK) questionnaire anonymously, and the responses were evaluated on the basis of previously validated scoring instructions. Results. Analysis of 98 respondents showed that 42% had a single learning modality preference, and the remaining 58% were multimodal learners. Of those who reported a single mode of learning, 61% preferred kinesthetic, 27% preferred reading/writing, and less than 1% each preferred aural or visual stimuli. Of all 98 caregivers, 82% included kinesthetic as a learning preference, 59% included read/write, 50% included aural, and 41% included visual. Conclusion. The majority of caregivers preferred the kinesthetic learning method, whether as a single learning preference or in combination with other approaches. Incorporating kinesthetic methods of learning, such as role plays and problem-solving case scenarios, into standardized asthma education curricula may be beneficial to patients and families in terms of understanding and using their regimen.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)683-687
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Asthma
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2005


  • Asthma
  • Asthma education
  • Aural
  • Kinesthetic
  • Learning preferences
  • Read/write
  • VARK
  • Visual


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