Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Degree Granting Department

Adult, Career and Higher Education

Major Professor

Waynne B. James, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Celeste Fenton, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Jeffery D. Kromrey, Ph.D.

Committee Member

William H. Young, Ed.D.


Adult Education, Multi Modal Paired Associates Learning Test, MMPALT, Hispanic, African American



The purpose of this study was to compare the individual learning modalities of Latino, Black, and Caucasian males and females with at least some college education utilizing the Multi-modal Paired Associates Learning Test IV (MMPALT IV). Using the MMPALT IV, 20 participants from each of the three race/ethnicities above the age of 40 were measured in each of the seven perceptual modalities: Visual, Print, Aural, Interactive, Haptic, Kinesthetic, and Olfactory. The MMPALT IV is a performance-based test, which measures a person’s capacity to acquire information through each of the seven learning channels.

ANOVA tests (2 x 3) with a follow-up Tukey test were used with race/ethnicity and gender identified as independent variables. The dependent variable was the individual perceptual modality sub-test scores. This study presented four research questions that addressed the following: the strongest modality profile for the participants, identifiable patterns of perceptual modalities within and between the groups, gender differences between learning styles, and consistencies for race/ethnicity with respect to gender. Statistically significant differences were found only in the Kinesthetic sub-test involving Latino participants, where they scored higher than both Black and Caucasians. The three highest scoring modalities for the Latino participants were Visual, Print, and Haptic; whereas the Black participants were Visual, Interactive, and Print. Caucasian participants scored highest on Visual, Print, and Interactive. Males and females responded similarly. All race/ethnicities responded similarly to previous MMPALT research with the exception of Kinesthetic where Latino’s performed better then Caucasians and Blacks. Implications for practice would include the incorporation of more interactive activities in a learning environment. Based on the results of this research, instructors may benefit from paying closer attention to kinesthetic activities for Latino students in a learning environment and not over relying on just traditional methods of teaching. This study was exploratory and was necessary to validate the current revisions to the MMAPLT IV. Future research could include modifying some of the subtests for more variation between test items, including more warm-up exercises to reduce any possible disorientation, adding other languages other than English, and testing other race/ethnicities.