Benefits Of Multimedia In The Classroom

1343 Words 6 Pages
Despite the reasoning suggesting multimedia is beneficial in the classroom, there is also some reason to believe that it can be harmful. Mayer, Griffith, Jurkowitz, and Rothman (2008) studied in their experiments the effect of increasing student interest by what they called extraneous or seductive details. As previously mentioned, multimedia presentations can increase attention, but it is important to note how they increase that attention. In the experiment, the researchers tested groups of participants on their retention of information about how a cold virus infects the human body after either a booklet, PowerPoint presentation, or animation on the cold virus was viewed. Some of these materials in each of the three different teaching tools …show more content…
It simply means that in order for multimedia to be used effectively in the classroom, an understanding of teaching materials is required. Multimedia can provide some great benefits by increasing student’s interest, allowing them to interact with materials, and clarifying complex concepts (Berk, 2009). The goal of multimedia should be to achieve these benefits without overtaxing a student’s working memory with extraneous processing. Most research articles about multimedia in the classroom include practical applications that teachers can use. For example, a study on either static (pictures) or dynamic (videos) visuals and text-only versions by Lewalter (2003), found that factual knowledge and comprehension after both types of visuals were significantly better than the text-only condition. Results like this suggest that teachers can successfully use both types of visuals to increase their student’s learning. Yang, Chang, Chien, Chien, & Tseng’s (2012) study on visual attention and multimedia presentations found that while pictures needed some accompanying text for optimal visual attention, complex conceptual graphics may cause cognitive overload for individuals unfamiliar with the material. While visuals may increase student learning, some visuals may be too complex for students to glean information from. The complexity of graphics can be increased if students know …show more content…
The idea of testing for retention brings up the topic of ecological validity though. The cognitive theory of multimedia learning is not without its critics. Many other researchers have criticized much of the evidence for the multimedia theory for not being applicable to the fluid classroom environment with students of diverse cognitive abilities, base knowledge sets and learning strategies (Sorden, 2012). There may even be differences on how students go about digesting visual and verbal information in different forms of multimedia (Yang, Chang, Chien, Chien, & Tseng, 2012). One of the issues with studying a topic as broad as multimedia in the classroom is that many small factors may affect the outcome of a research study. As discussed in this review, multimedia may enhance learning, but there are many factors such as seductive details and the redundancy effect that may impair learning. This impairment may lead research findings to suggest the multimedia altogether is an ineffective teaching tool (Rasc & Schnotz, 2009). The good news is that the cognitive theory of multimedia learning can only improve over time. Mayer, who has published so many articles regarding the theory, has openly accepted the criticisms surrounding the theory (Sorden, 2012). While the foundation for the multimedia

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