INTJ Learning Style

How INTJs acquire, memorize and recollect information

In INTJs, interest in learning a subject revolves around finding the answer to the question, “Why is this so?” The clearer and deeper the answer this type receives during the learning process, the greater their interest in the topic, and the greater their desire to delve deeper into the subject.

Their desire to study something is driven by a search for ideas that can answer not only fundamental questions, but also practical questions of popular interest.

INTJs are easily receptive to difficult material when it is presented in conceptual form and new information follows logically from that given before. A moderate pace is best when delivering material, because INTJs spend time forming and retaining theoretical connections between different pieces of information.

INTJs connect the information they receive to a unifying theoretical basis. They can retain knowledge remembered in this way for decades. INTJs are also capable of mechanical memorization, although the amount thus retained is substantially lower than from memory based on a generalized understanding of the material. Repeatedly presenting the same material helps INTJs remember it, but presenting it from different points of view and using various examples is even more effective.

INTJ’s are able to accurately reproduce received information, especially if it is mentally organized in a conceptual way. Mechanical reproduction is substantially less accurate, which is usually linked to this type’s relative weakness when it comes to remembering material with poor logical flow. On top of this, they are capable of highly accurate recollection of visual information that lacks logical flow, if it was received under intensely focused attention. For example, INTJs can reproduce many details of the rapidly changing scenery when driving in a car. This seems to be related to the fact that they are shutting off the reflection process when taking in the information.

INTJs learn best when teaching is systematic (e.g., an organized degree or certification program) and intensive. However, they are also able to learn material from sources not unified by a single formal learning process (e.g., individual courses or readings). Independent work with the material being studied is valuable to their learning. The difficulty of the material only increases an INTJ’s drive to understand it, and INTJs are capable of learning material on their own. Visual aids help them learn, but are not very important for their overall assimilation of a topic.

INTJs are good at actively working with material they understand and receive great satisfaction from it. They are able to apply it in concrete tasks or develop it and expand on it in an assigned direction.

INTJs have a high tolerance to high levels of learning related stress. However, they prefer to evenly distribute their efforts when learning new material, rather than resorting to last-minute cramming.

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An INTJ’s learning is improved when:

  • Learning is systematic and intensive
  • Material is presented on a conceptual basis
  • Material is delivered at moderate pace
  • Material is presented from different viewpoints or using various examples (improves retention)
  • Material is presented in a historical context and with its historical applications (improves retention)
  • The same material is presented more than once (improves retention)

An INTJ’s learning is hindered when:

  • Significant amounts of information lacking substantial theoretical connection are presented at a fast pace
  • Material is trivial (sharply reduces interest)
  • The knowledge received does not significantly broaden and deepen their understanding
  • The material calls for a strong emotional reaction
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