More Info on Abstract/Random/Concrete/Sequential, Links,
& some very helpful TABLES

We first came across the information about this concept of Random and Sequential, Abstract and Concrete, through hearing it discussed on a radio program. It immediately became part of our working tool box in dealing with ourselves and others with whom we work. We have found it particularly helpful in dealing with couples and with children, especially those who tend to be labeled as "behavior problems." Because of requests for more detail after having put this small summary on our site, I did a search and came up with some other helpful online resources about this tool.

"The Phoenix symbol, Mind Styles and Gregorc Style Delineator are trademarks of Anthony F. Gregorc, Ph.D. � 1999-2002 Anthony F. Gregorc, Ph.D."

"We are: a Connecticut-based research, training, consulting and publishing firm established in 1981. Our President, Dr. Anthony F. Gregorc, is the creator of the Mind Styles™ Model, originator of the four style types: Concrete Sequential (CS), Abstract Sequential (AS), Abstract Random (AR) and Concrete Random (CR), and the developer of the Gregorc Style Delineator™."

OK, so after having duly quoted the "TM" and pointed to this source, let me say that there are other sources online which are more informative and user-friendly:

"The Gregorc model is a cognitive model designed to reveal two types of abilities, perception and ordering. Perceptual abilities, the means through which information is grasped, translate into two qualities: abstractness and concreteness. Ordering abilities are the ways the learner organizes information, either sequentially (linearly) or randomly (non-linearly). Gregorc couples these qualities to form four learning categories: concrete/sequential (CS), abstract/sequential (AS), abstract/random (AR), and concrete/random (CR). Although everyone has all four qualities, most people are predisposed toward one or two of them...........students with a concrete-sequential dominant learning-style tend to prefer programmed instruction, workbooks, lab manuals, field trips, and applications. Students with an abstract-sequential dominant learning-style tend to prefer lectures, books, syllabi, and guided individual study. Students with a concrete-random learning style prefer independent study, games, simulations, and problem solving, while students with an abstract-random learning style prefer television, movies, assignments with reflection time, and group discussions."

  • The following information was quoted from: "Personality types and work styles, Bailie Technical Services Inc." on the site:
    Unfortunately, this site is no longer current, and the link shown below is no longer accurate. The information, however, is quite valid.

"Dr. Gregorc’s Mind-Styles™ model ( is based on )how we perceive information (and) how we use (order) the perceived information:
Concrete – Sequential: systematic
Abstract – Sequential: research
Concrete – Random: instinctual
Abstract – Random: absorption

Learning style summaries
 Concrete-Sequential (= xSTx)
– Organized, stable, productive, perfectionist
 Abstract-Sequential (= xNTx)
– Precise, conceptual, visionary, opinionated
 Concrete-Random (= xSFx)
– Curious, hands-on, impulsive, impatient
 Abstract-Random (= xNFx)
– Spontaneous, adaptable, social, perceptive "

  • The following tables were quoted from:
    Unfortunately, this site is no longer current, and the address is no longer accurate.
    The information, however, is still quite valid.

Learning Preferences for each Mind Style

Concrete Sequentials prefer: Order and quiet
Exact directions
Guided Practice
Know the accepted way of doing something
Can apply ideas in a practical, hands-on way
Are given approval for specific work done
Abstract Sequentials prefer: Lecture and reading
Follow traditional procedures
Work alone
Logical explanations
Are respected for intellectual ability
Abstract Randoms prefer: Cooperative work
Assignments with room for interpretation
Balance of social activities and work
Noncompetitive atmosphere
Personalized learning
Are given personal attention and emotional support
Concrete Randoms prefer:
Trial and error approach
Hands-on experiences
Brainstorming and open-ended activities
Produce real, but creative, products
Original and unique approaches to problem solving
Self-directed learning

The different styles struggle with:

Concrete Sequential stretches: Making choices
Open ended assignments and "what if" questions
Dealing with opposing views
Taking new approaches
Interpreting abstract ideas
Seeing the forest
Abstract Sequential stretches: Expressing emotions
Working cooperatively in groups
Writing creatively
Taking risks or facing the unpredictable
Open ended problems
Placing grades in perspective…reducing perfectionism
Abstract Random stretches: Working alone
Attending to details and giving exact answers
Working within time limits
Concentrating on one task at a time
Being corrected
Expecting less emotional response from others
Concrete Random stretches: Pacing and meeting time limitations
Completing projects
Choosing one answer
Keeping detailed records
Accepting others’ ideas without showing another way
Accepting when change is impossible

Gregorc's Mind Style Characteristics

The Concrete Sequential individual:

Needs and enjoys structured situations.
Likes to work with hands-on projects.
Likes things to be ordered and arranged in specific ways.
Likes clear and definite directions.
Is always "busy", looking for constructive things to do, can’t sit still for long.
Is a natural organizer.
Prefers to do things step by step.
Follows directions.
Is a natural editor, can take anything and make it better.
Has a great fear of being wrong.

The Abstract Sequential individual:

Reads avidly for information and ideas logically presented.
Needs a quiet environment to think and work.
Likes to debate about ideas and controversial issues.
Likes to learn just to learn - self-directed.
Gathers information and analyzes ideas.
Strives for intellectual recognition.
Thinks in a structured, logical and organized way.
Fears appearing foolish or uninformed.

The Abstract Random individual:

Dislikes routine procedures and orderliness.
Is extremely sensitive to his/her own and others’ feelings.
Is flexible, accepting and responds easily to change.
Learns well through discussion and sharing of ideas.
Is imaginative.
Personalizes information.
Is usually involved in many projects or interest at one time.
Is focused on friends and relationships.
Has a fear of not being liked.

The Concrete Random individual:

Is highly curious.
Finds out-of-the-ordinary answers to problems.
Seems driven to say or do things in a way others have not.
Is a risk-taker.
Likes to discover his/her own way of doing things; must test things for self.
Is extremely independent and competitive with self.
Prefers to investigate and experiment; enjoys hands-on experimenting.
Skips steps and details.
Shows original creativity; has varied and unusual ideas.
Has multiple projects going at once.
Finds possibilities, creates change.
Is notorious for not reading directions or instructions.
Fears structure.

  Please do not hesitate to write to us if you would like to dialogue about this very useful tool: [email protected]

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Special Thanks to Wiel
Last revised: May 30, 2006