Background: By knowing the different students’ learning styles, teachers can plan their instruction carefully in ways that are capitalized on student preferences. The current research is done to determine specific learning styles of students. Method: This cross sectional study was conducted in Al Ahsa College of Medicine from 2011 to 2012. A sample of 518 students completed a questionnaire based on Kolb inventory (LSI 2) to determine their learning style. A spreadsheet was prepared to compute all the information to get the cumulative scores of learning abilities and identify the learning styles. Results: The mean values of the learning abilities; active experimentation (AE), reflective observation (RO), abstract conceptualizing (AC) or concrete experience (CE) for male students were 35, 28, 30 and 26 respectively while they were 31, 30, 31 and 29 respectively for female students. There were significant difference between male and female students regarding the mean values of AE-RO (6.7 vs 1.5) and AC-CE (4.1 vs 2.1). This indicated that the style of male students were more convergent and accommodating than those of female students. The female had more assimilating and divergent styles. Conclusion: Learning style in Saudi medical students showed difference between males and females in the early college years. Most male students had convergent and accommodating learning styles, while the female dominant learning styles were divergent and assimilating. Planning and implementation of instruction need to consider these findings.
Learning style, Saudi Arabia, Kolb learning style inventory