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Cognitive Load in Multimedia Learning


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Slides from the second Literature & Practice Session of the uImagine Scholarship in Online Learning Group took place on the 28th October.

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Cognitive Load in Multimedia Learning

  1. 1. Cognitive Load in Multimedia Learning For Literature and Practice Discussion 28th October 2015 Professor Barney Dalgarno Co-Director Institutional Engagement
  2. 2. •  Introductory presentation/comments from chair including contextual background to the choice of articles and overview of some key points •  Round table to draw out a) key conceptual ideas and b) opinions and/or questions about the ideas and/or methods and/or quality of articles •  Round table discussion about the implications for teaching and educational design/support practice at CSU •  Sessions to be recorded and the recordings and presentations placed on the uImagine website Structure for these discussions
  3. 3. Mayer, R. E., & Moreno, R. (2003). Nine ways to reduce cognitive load in multimedia learning. Educational psychologist, 38(1), 43-52, S15326985EP3801_6#.ViqXHytH6Zc Article for discussion
  4. 4. •  This body of work has a large number of empirical studies behind it •  Mayer and colleagues have published numerous articles reporting on these studies •  The article discussed has 1857 Google Scholar citations while the book Multimedia Learning has 6004 citations •  Cognitive Load Theory on which this work builds has also had significant academic impact (e.g. Sweller’s original 1988 article has 3486 citations) Why important
  5. 5. •  Multimedia: •  words (text and audio) •  pictures (static, animated, interactive) •  Learning: •  attending to material •  organising within cognitive structures •  integrating with existing knowledge •  Measuring learning •  retention tests •  problem based application (primary focus here) Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning
  6. 6. •  Assumptions from cognitive science: •  Dual channel assumption •  Limited capacity assumption •  Active processing assumption Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning
  7. 7. Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning
  8. 8. •  We have limited available cognitive capacity (capacity to process incoming information and information within working memory) •  Three kinds of cognitive demands (and how addressed through design): •  Essential processing (can be redistributed) •  Incidental processing (can be reduced) •  Representational holding (can be reduced) •  Cognitive overload can be detrimental to learning when incidental and representational demands restrict essential processing Cognitive Overload (building on Cognitive Load Theory)
  9. 9. Cognitive Overload in Multimedia Learning Overload scenario Load-reducing method Essential processing (visual overload) Offloading visual to auditory Essential processing (complex conceptual material) Segmenting (e.g. learner control) Pre-training Extraneous material Weeding out non-essential detail Signalling to highlight essential aspects Confusing presentation (adding incidental processing) Aligning words and pictures Eliminating redundancy Representational overload Synchronising visual and auditory information Individualising (e.g. to spatial ability level)
  10. 10. From the Educational Psychologist article: •  Modality effect •  Segmentation effect •  Pre-training effect •  Coherence effect •  Signalling effect •  Spatial contiguity effect •  Redundancy effect •  Temporal contiguity effect •  Spatial ability effect Mayer and Moreno’s Nine Principles
  11. 11. From Multimedia Learning: •  Modality principle •  Segmenting principle •  Pre-training principle •  Coherence principle •  Signalling principle •  Spatial contiguity principle •  Redundancy principle •  Temporal contiguity principle •  Spatial ability effect Mayer’s Twelve Principles •  Multimedia principle •  Personalisation principle •  Voice principle •  Image principle
  12. 12. •  Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning •  Cognitive Load Theory and some alternative perspectives •  Cognitive overload in multimedia learning and how it can be addressed •  Alternative perspectives •  Implications for learning design and teaching at CSU Discussion points