Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Graduate Nursing

First Advisor

Margaret Hegge


The focus of this study was to describe the learning styles of generic and adult nursing students enrolled in a two-year Associate Degree program. Differences in learning styles between the two groups and variables associated with these differences were also addressed. The sample consisted for forty-eight freshmen nursing students; fourteen students in the sample were generic and thirty-four students in the sample were adult according to the definitions given in the study. The Chi-squire statistic and descriptive analysis were utilized. The results of the study indicated all four learning styles, described by Kolb, were present in the sample. The primary learning style of the generic sample was Diverger. The primary learning style of the adult sample was Diverger and secondarily, Assimilator. Traditional teaching methods are being challenged as the awareness of student's individual differences increases. Research supports the theory that each person learns in a unique way, different from every other person. These inherent learning differences or styles become compounded with the experience and maturation of the adult student. The adult student brings to the classroom a different perspective than the generic student, with typically more experience, maturity and clearer goals.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Nursing students -- Study and teaching
Nursing students -- Attitudes



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


No Copyright - United State