What is Individual Differences?
Education,  Educational Psychology

What is Individual Differences? It’s Nature, Type and Importance?

                       Individual differences is an important area of study of Psychology. What is Individual difference? Why it is important? In this article we shall discuss different aspects of individual differences

                       Generally, individual member of each species that exists on Earth shows some common characteristics. In fact these characteristics make them different from other species. For example all the horses, cows, donkeys are seems to be alike. However, if we closely observe then we find many differences within the individuals also. These differences may be of size, shape, colour, appearance and innumerable other aspects of behavior.

Types of Differences:

Following are the different types of differences observed in human beings:

  1. Physical Differences: These are based on physical characteristics. Such as height, weight, colour of skin, eye, hair, facial expression, mannerism of speech and walk.
  2. Mental Difference: Similarly it is based on intellectual abilities and capacities like reasoning and thinking powers, power of imagination, creative expression etc.
  3. Emotional Differences: In some individuals, positive emotions like love, affection, brotherhood are more prevalent. Whereas, in others negative emotions are more powerful.
  4. Learning Differences: Some learn more easily and are able to make use of their learning more comfortably than others.
  5. Differences in Social and Moral Development: Unlike others, some adjusts and develops good social relation. But some of them may also become unsocial, isolated or antisocial.

Read also:

  1. What are the best methods of learning for a child?
  2. EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY: Its nature, meaning and importance
  3. An Essay on Education

What are causes of Individual Differences?

Firstly, hereditical factor is the first and foremost cause of individual differences. Particularly, genes of parents determines the fate of a child.

Secondly, the environment that influences a child right from the conception in mothers womb is another factor.

Thirdly, sometimes mental illness is resulted due to adverse effect of medications or surgery. This eventually leads to individual differences.

Why Individual Differences are important?

  1. It helps a teacher to identify students of his class who is different from others.
  2. Also it helps a teacher to provide individual assistance to child with need.
  3. In addition it helps parents to guide their child in overcoming difficulties in studies as well as life.
  4. Moreover, modification in curriculum can be made to address different kinds of students.
  5. Furthermore, it helps educationists and researchers t derive appropriate methodology to handle such a child.

How to address Individual Differences:

In order to facilitate learning of every child, the teacher can adopt the following measures:

Firstly, the teacher should have proper knowledge of the individuals potentialities. Such as abilities, capacities, interests, aptitudes and other personality traits.

Secondly, the teacher should employ ability grouping. That means students should be divided into homogenous groups for performing an activity.

Thirdly, to meet the requirement of varying needs of students curriculum be should made flexible and varied.

Fourthly, adopt fruitful method of teaching to meet the need of every child.

Fifthly, , in addition the teacher should provide as far as practicable individualized instruction to students.

Lastly, encourage students to express freely and participate in class activities

Each child is a grace of God. Despite of the differences they posses we must always support them. Each child has varied ability to learn. As a human being it is our duty to support them.

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