As a current student I’ve come across many types of professors and teaching styles. We tend to focus on the type of teaching style as whether we can be successful in class, but we don’t really ever look at our individual learning style when we look for good professors or mentors and vice versa as mentors look for potential mentees.
I’ve discovered that I am a very visual and hands on learner, and that I need someone to break down each individual step for me so that I can really understand the process and reason to why something is done. It is very difficult for me to open up a textbook and begin to teach myself on a subject but many people can, and thats great! We shouldn't believe that one learning style is superior to the other, but I do think it is important to know what kind of learner we are and how to surround ourselves with the people and resources who can support us in that way.
In learning how to program I’ve come to learn that being a self motivator and self teacher are very, very important qualities to have. They are important because more often than not you are learning new languages and frameworks in your free time rather than in a class sitting through lectures. If you come to find you may not be the strongest at self teaching or self motivating it may be a good idea to push yourself to be the best self teacher/motivator you can be.
We can achieve this by developing productive habits. A productive habit can be as simple as reading articles frequently. (dev.to has become one of my productive habits)
So, do you really know what your learning style is? Do you understand what kind of resources you need in order to be successful in longterm learning? (institutional education or otherwise)
We need to ask ourselves these questions not only to understand ourselves, but so that we can be efficient in asking for and receiving guidance.
As a mentor or anyone really in a position that manages/oversees Jr. Devs and interns it's really important that you understand the learning styles of said Jr. Devs. its important because newcomers will be nervous, they will be afraid, and they will need to learn A LOT before they become self sufficient and are able to handle projects on their own.
To get them to this point of self sufficiency they need to be taught and molded. This can be done more effectively if it is understood HOW they learn. Whether they need paired programming to watch an experienced dev create and alter, or they are very efficient visual and self teachers that they just need to be pointed to the right resources.
Have you come across any valuable teaching styles or learning styles? Do you think that being a self learner and being self motivated are crucial to be successful in the world of software engineering/Tech?
I Would love to hear your thoughts on styles of learning and teaching, past experiences and the likes.