Bob Dunn’s Survey Shows Text and Screenshots are the Preferred Way to Learn WordPress

Two weeks ago, I asked you to participate in Bob Dunn’s survey that asked, how do you learn WordPress? Dunn has published the results to the survey and they’re not surprising.

Out of 428 responses, 63% learn WordPress best using text and images. Roughly a third of respondents learn best using video tutorials or one-on-one in-person training.

Best Way of Learning WordPress
Best Way of Learning WordPress

People learn things differently, but I don’t think it’s surprising so many learn best through text and images. It’s a method humans have used for centuries and is easier to reference compared to audio and video. Dunn offers advice to WordPress coaches and trainers looking at the data from an instructor’s point of view:

If you are looking at this from an instructor’s point of view, I bet you can come up with a lot of other thoughts and maybe even some deep insights. But the fact is, while these numbers can tell us a lot of what the majority of people prefer, as teachers of WordPress, we still need to find the markets that are not being filled, and the offerings that are not over-saturated, no matter what the numbers tell us.

To see a visual representation of the results and to read Dunn’s thoughts on his findings, check out his latest blog post. Also, be sure to catch WordPress Weekly live on Wednesday, April 8th, at 9:30 PM Eastern as Dunn will be our special guest. We’ll talk about the survey results and discuss common pain points users experience with WordPress.

12 Comments


  1. “…while these numbers can tell us a lot of what the majority of people prefer…” – I’m not sure they can. This is only relevant to Bob’s readers right?

    Report


  2. I am a combination guru.

    There are some AMAZING video tutorials for free on Youtube about lots of different coding. Ruby, C#, etc. I’ve went through a few of the WP ones and they were semi-helpful. I bought the Oreilly book albeit a bit dated and the newer text by Wrox.

    I already know jQuery upside and down and Javascript etc. PHP I am capable with. I am by no means expert with it nor do I want to be. It is what it is. I’ve coded in Assembler, C#, VB, C, C++, Java, GO! and besides assembler I find any of the above preferable.

    But all that aside videos are great for “quick learn” but at least with me, I really prefer reading. Stack Overflow is a GREAT place to learn. I dont want look at others plugin’s etc. as quite frankly alot of the code I have looked at (as well as is the case with alot of 3P Joomla stuff) would get them fired from most any coding job. So, really a BAD way to learn.

    Poppin’ to various websites that have good information in consistent fashion.

    I’ve went through the entire codex twice not that I have taken it all in per se internalizing it if you will.

    I do like to read however, its fun-de-mental

    Report


  3. Do we know if any demographic data about the experience of the respondents was included in the survey?

    Report


  4. Hi Jeff
    “…Text and Screenshots are the Preferred Way to Learn WordPress”

    No big surprise but I did think that video might be higher than 35%.

    Must be all those text books we had to read at school.

    Report


    1. I’m sure video is pretty high, but many people prefer to read because it’s faster.

      I’m not always patient enough to sit through a video, in fact I hate when they are the only medium for support. I want to scan and get right to the info I need.

      If I can’t figure it out after that, then a step by step video is great.

      Report


      1. Sounds good to me Lisa.

        Some years ago I travelled a lot by train and I used to download documents from the web and read them on the train – perfect for train journeys.

        Report


  5. Here I am… :)

    Brin, it could be thought of as my readers, but I know I had a lot of people sharing this survey, so it wasn’t based just on my regular readers. In fact, I know from my stats that there was a big increase during that time, so I know a lot who took the survey could easily have been first time readers :)

    Pam, yeah, someone else asked about the demographics, in fact it raised a lot more detailed questions. But my goal was to get simple results. I could have added more questions to the survey, such as age, gender, occupation, etc, etc. etc. But also I know that with new readers to my site, they would be less willing to do the survey with a lot of detailed, personal questions, and likely deciding not to take it. So didn’t want to put up that barrier.

    But as I said in the post, I have talked to hundreds, if not thousands of people through one-on-one, workshops, conferences, networking events, etc. And I can tell you, based on that 80% or so of WP users that are out there and not deep in the trenches of WP, this is spot on considering the feedback I have heard in general.

    Report


    1. With all the hype about video learning, it’s very interesting to discover that I’m not alone in vastly preferring text and pictures. Like Lisa League, I have no patience for the pace of video tutorials.

      I thought I might be an outlier as in my case, I had difficulty in normal classes at school but graduated with honours in one third the time when on self-paced learning. But I guess I’m not that special after all. If I used smilies, I’d post one here.

      Report


  6. A great learning community is WordPress.org. Both the forums and the Codex are great resources for learning and understanding how WordPress works. When i started out with WordPress, i just hung out in the chat. Within a few months i went from asking questions to answering them, and made some new friends. Community learning

    Report

Comments are closed.