Volume 52(2) - 2011 - DOI: 10.5032/jae.2011.02012


The influences of cognitive styles have been the focus of research on problems in education for quite some time (Witkin, Moore, Goodenough, & Cox, 1977). In fact, agricultural educators are rapidly increasing the amount of research and education focused on understanding and utilizing cognitive function in an attempt to improve educational programs. The purpose of this study was to describe the relationships between three measures of cognitive function: critical thinking disposition, problem solving style, and learning style when participants are encouraged to engage in their natural cognitive tendencies by being placed in an intense environment. These three cognitive styles/dispositions were measured and analyzed for correlations. Substantial relationships were discovered. Cognitive abilities and preferences are repeatedly taken in to account when creating and revising educational programs to enhance student learning. With a greater understanding of how cognitive dispositions relate to one another, a clearer vision of student preferences and abilities can be taken in to account when creating educational curricula and activities.
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