According to different learning theories, human beings perceive and process information in different ways (Winstanley, 2005). Experts have also proved that the human brain is responsible for the different manner of thinking and consequently, the learning process (Deutsch and Springer, 1997). This research paper will evaluate and discuss how the left and the right brain affect the learning process in human beings.
Winstanley (2005) says that, the structure and functions of the mind suggest that the two sides of the brain perform different functions. According to research, the left and the right sides of the brain “control different modes of thinking” (Deutsch and Springer, 1997). According to Right-Brain Vs Left-Brain theory, individuals prefer one mode over the other. However, some individuals can use the whole brain and adapt different modes at the same time.
The concept of left-brain versus right brain is based on what is generally referred as the lateralization of the brain; it determines how individuals process information (Philips, 2011). This concept argues that one side of the brain control specific functions and people are either left-brained or right-brained. According to this theory, the right side of the brain functions well in expressive and creative tasks (Philips, 2011).
As such, the right side of brain performs well in areas of music, expressing emotions, reading emotions, indentifying colors, images, and expressing feelings (Turgeon, 1993). On the other hand, the left side of brain is considered to perform well at those tasks that involve reasoning, understanding language, creativity, critical thinking, and expressing numbers (Turgeon, 1993).
In fact, the left-brain is more competent in dealing with calculations, assessing issues that require logic, understanding and expressing language, and thinking critically (Philips, 2011). All Left- brained people are said to display this characteristics and they perform well in mathematics.
Usually, the two sides of the brain can reason. However, reasoning can only happen in different ways. As already observed, the left-brain is considered logical while the right brain is considered more holistic (Philips, 2011). Left-brained people process information faster and successfully.
Left-brained individuals prefer to learn step-by step; they prefer to learn by getting the details leading to logical understanding of the concept (Philips, 2011).On the other hand, right-brained people are “simultaneous processors” and they prefer to learn concepts beginning with understanding the general concept and then breaking points into parts in order to understand specific ideas (Philips, 2011).
Notably, learning is a process. The manner in which an instructor teaches the class affects the learning process. According to research, left-brained teachers prefer to teach using lecture and discussion (Turgeon, 1993). Mostly, such teachers are strict on deadline and usually adhere to learning schedule.
In addition to this, left-brained teachers like to give the students take-away assignment because they want students to learn independently. Similarly, left-brained students prefer working on their own and independently (Turgeon, 1993).
Mostly, left-brained students also prefer to carryout research because this learning technique is appealing to them. This means that, when left-brained teachers train left-brained students, learning process becomes more effective and enjoyable. Such students tend to perform better in this situation.
The right brained teachers prefer to use gestures and hands when teaching (Deutsch and Springer, 1997). Such teachers incorporate arts, creativity, and do music lesson in most cases. Turgeon (1993) observes that right-brained teachers also prefer “busy, active, and noisy classroom environment.” Generally, right-brained teachers prefer to teach students in groups, and have a preference of instructing students to work in groups.
Just like right-brained teachers, the right-brained students also prefer working in groups. As such, these students also like to do projects, designs, and music. The right-brained students always prefer doing projects rather than writing essays and doing research (Winstanley, 2005). This also affects the learning process.
Generally, left or right-brained students prefer a specific learning approach although they can be able to learn using different modes. However, even though student can learn using other techniques, they learn effectively using their areas of strength (Turgeon, 1993). In fact, students become contented when they are taught using modes of learning that are appealing to them. Therefore, the difference in learning modes affects the learning process among different students.
The opinion is that teachers should take this perspective as a challenge. Teachers should be observant in order to indentify the learning modes preferred by different students. Once an instructor indentifies the modes of learning preferred by different students, the learning process will become more effective.
In conclusion, the right brain and the left brain affects learning process because of the different modes of learning. While different sides of the brain have different preferences, both the left and the right sides of the brain are involved in the learning process although in a different way.
Because individuals process information in different ways, it is important that people should indentify how best they process information in the brain. Once an individual indentifies this concept, learning will become very effective (Deutsch and Springer, 1997). In addition to this, people can be able to improve the strategies used in learning.
Deutsch, G., & Springer, S. (1997). Left brain, right brain: perspectives on cognitive neuroscience. Dallas: Freeman.
Philips, C. (2011). Left Brain Right Brain. New York: Connections Book Publishing, Limited.
Turgeon, M. (1993). Right-brain left-brain reflexology: a self-help approach to balancing life energies with color, sound, and pressure point techniques. New York: Bear & Co.
Winstanley, D. (2005). Personal effectiveness: a guide to action. London: CIPD Publishing.