The concept of personal learning environments has become a significant research topic over the past few years. Building such personal, adaptive environments requires the convergence of several modeling dimensions and an interaction strategy based on a user model that incorporates key cognitive characteristics of the learners. This paper reports on an initial study carried out to evaluate the extent to which matching the interface design to the learner cognitive style facilitates learning performance. Results show that individual differences influence the way learners react to and perform under different interface conditions, however no simple effects were observed that confirm a relationship between cognitive style and interface affect. © Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2005.