Institute of Learning Styles Research

Dissertation Abstracts

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Abstract Title

Witte, M. (1999). A validation study of the relationship of learning styles and mindstyles as indicated by the Multi-Modal Paired Association Learning Test III and the Gregorc Style Delineator (Doctoral dissertation, University of South Florida, 1999). Dissertation Abstracts International, 60(08A), 2770.


This study sought to determine if the Multi-Modal Paired Associates Learning Test III (MMPALT III), which assesses attributes from the sensory modality domain, measures constructs different from those of the Gregorc Style Delineator, which assesses attributes from the cognitive domain. The MMPALT III is a performance-based learning style instrument identifying an individual’s ability to acquire information through print, aural, interactive, visual, haptic, kinesthetic, and olfactory mediums. The Gregorc Style Delineator is a self-assessment instrument identifying an individual’s dominant, intermediate, and/or low mediation channels classified as: Concrete Sequential, Abstract Sequential, Abstract Random, and Concrete Random. Relationships were examined by age, educational attainment level, and gender. Age categories consisted of younger [18 to 30 years (n=40)] and older [50 years of age and older (n=40)]; educational attainment levels consisted of basic [high school or General Educational Development (GED) diploma and no baccalaureate] and advanced (high school diploma or GED and at least a baccalaureate); and gender consisted of male and female.

Results indicated the MMPALT III learning styles subtests were independent of cognitive mindstyles as reported by Gregorc Style Delineator subtests. Using Pearson Product Moment and Point Biserial Correlations, the nature and strength of the relationship between the two instrument subtests and variables of interest were examined. Low correlations were found in relation to age, educational attainment level, and gender between the MMPALT III and the Gregorc Style Delineator. Participants’ dominant learning modalities, measured by the MMPALT III, were Haptic, Visual, and Interactive. Participants’ dominant mediation channels, as measured by the Gregorc Style Delineator, were Concrete Sequential and Abstract Sequential.

An implication of this study is that the MMPALT III measures constructs separate from the Gregorc Style Delineator. These instruments were designed using different conceptual structures and are independent of each other. Recommendations for practice include providing adult educators and participants learning styles orientations, training in adult education environments, and incorporating specific learning styles and mindstyles in training designs. Recommendations for future research include additional studies using narrower age and educational attainment categories; specific occupational groups; and correlations with other cognitive instruments examining age, educational attainment level, and gender-based patterns.

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