Reliability and validity of scores from the index of learning styles

Acad Med. 2005 Oct;80(10 Suppl):S97-101. doi: 10.1097/00001888-200510001-00026.


Background: No medical education studies have investigated the validity of scores from Felder's Index of Learning Styles (ILS). This study evaluated the reliability of ILS scores, and compared them with scores from Pelley's Learning Styles Type Indicator (LSTI).

Method: Internal medicine residents completed the ILS twice and the LSTI once.

Results: A total of 138 residents consented. Cronbach's alpha and test-retest correlation for ILS scores were 0.61 and 0.75 (active-reflective dimension), 0.78 and 0.81 (sensing-intuitive), 0.70 and 0.60 (visual-verbal), and 0.67 and 0.81 (sequential-global). The multitrait-multimethod matrix provided evidence of convergence and discrimination for scores from the active-reflective and sensing-intuitive dimensions of the ILS and LSTI. Cronbach's alpha for LSTI scores ranged from 0.19 to 0.69.

Conclusions: These data support the reliability and validity of scores from the ILS active-reflective and sensing-intuitive dimensions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Humans
  • Internal Medicine / education
  • Internship and Residency
  • Learning*
  • Male
  • Minnesota
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*