PERCEPTUAL LEARNING STYLE PREFERENCES OF GIFTED VS. NON-GIFTED TURKISH EFL LEARNERS

A. Merç

Anadolu University (TURKEY)
Following Reid’s (1987) seminal work related to the perceptual learning style preferences of EFL learners, several research studies were conducted to find out the learning styles of students in various contexts. This study aimed to identify the perceptual learning style preferences of gifted secondary school EFL learners in Turkey related to their study of English and attempted to compare their preferences with their non-gifted peers’ preferences. To this end, the “Perceptual Learning Style Preference Questionnaire” (Reid, 1987) was given to 240 (107 gifted and 133 non-gifted) students from 6th, 7th, and 8th grades in Turkey. The results of the quantitative analyses showed that gifted and non-gifted EFL learners were not very different from each other in terms of their learning styles preferences. The only slight differences were observed in auditory and kinesthetic learning styles: non-gifted learners preferred auditory and kinesthetic learning styles more than their gifted peers. The other learning styles (tactile, group, visual, and individual learning) were preferred by both gifted and non-gifted learners in a similar level. The findings of the study are discussed along with the current literature on learning styles preferences in EFL learning and already existing giftedness theories. Certain implications for both gifted and non-gifted language learners, language teachers, gifted education specialists, and teacher education programs.