cognitive load


  • According to work conducted in the field of instructional design and pedagogy, broadly, there are three types of cognitive load: intrinsic cognitive load is the effort associated
    with a specific topic; extraneous cognitive load refers to the way information or tasks are presented to a learner; and germane cognitive load refers to the work put into creating a permanent store of knowledge (a schema).

  • [25] A 2020 study showed that there may be various demand components that together form extraneous cognitive load, but that may need to be measured using different questionnaires.

  • Much later, other researchers developed a way to measure perceived mental effort which is indicative of cognitive load.

  • Since this early study many other researchers have used this and other constructs to measure cognitive load as it relates to learning and instruction.

  • [41] Regardless of the task at hand, or the processes used in solving the task, people who experience poverty also experience higher cognitive load.

  • When it comes to learning, their lack of experience with numbers, words, and concepts increases their cognitive load.

  • When many cognitive resources are available, the probability of switching from one task to another is high and does not lead to optimal switching behavior.

  • [21] Effects of heavy cognitive load See also: Audience effect and Drive theory A heavy cognitive load typically creates error or some kind of interference in the task at

  • [6] Theory In the late 1980s, John Sweller developed cognitive load theory out of a study of problem solving,[2] in order “to provide guidelines intended to assist in the
    presentation of information in a manner that encourages learner activities that optimize intellectual performance”.

  • The fundamental tenet of cognitive load theory is that the quality of instructional design will be raised if greater consideration is given to the role and limitations of
    working memory.

  • [4] For example, Deleeuw and Mayer (2008) compared three commonly used measures of cognitive load and found that they responded in different ways to extraneous, intrinsic,
    and germane load.

  • [19] An example of extraneous cognitive load occurs when there are two possible ways to describe a square to a student.

  • [26] This is because a heavy cognitive load pushes excess information into subconscious processing, which involves the use of schemas, the patterns of thought and behavior
    that help us to organize information into categories and identify the relationships between them.

  • Heavy cognitive load can have negative effects on task completion, and it is important to note that the experience of cognitive load is not the same in everyone.

  • He suggests problem solving by means-ends analysis requires a relatively large amount of cognitive processing capacity, which may not be devoted to schema construction.

  • [39] Pointing allows a child to use the object they are pointing at as the best representation of it, which means they do not have to hold this representation in their working
    memory, thereby reducing their cognitive load.

  • However, it is essential to distinguish it from the actual construct of Cognitive Load (CL) or Mental Workload (MWL), which is studied widely in many disciplines.

  • [16] Types Cognitive load theory provides a general framework and has broad implications for instructional design, by allowing instructional designers to control the conditions
    of learning within an environment or, more generally, within most instructional materials.

  • Experts have more knowledge or experience with regard to a specific task which reduces the cognitive load associated with the task.

  • In cognitive psychology, cognitive load refers to the amount of working memory resources used.

  • With increased distractions, particularly from cell phone use, students are more prone to experiencing high cognitive load which can reduce academic success.

  • [44] As a result, Embodied Cognitive Load Theory has been suggested as a means to predict the usefulness of interactive features in learning environments.

  • Specifically, it provides empirically-based guidelines that help instructional designers decrease extraneous cognitive load during learning and thus refocus the learner’s
    attention toward germane materials, thereby increasing germane (schema related) cognitive load.

  • [37] Children lack general knowledge, and this is what creates increased cognitive load in children.

  • [22] The ergonomic approach seeks a quantitative neurophysiological expression of cognitive load which can be measured using common instruments, for example using the heart
    rate-blood pressure product (RPP) as a measure of both cognitive and physical occupational workload.

  • [7] Measurement As of 1993 Paas and Van Merriënboer[3] had developed a construct known as relative condition efficiency, which helps researchers measure perceived mental effort,
    an index of cognitive load.

  • Because there is a single limited cognitive resource using resources to process the extraneous load, the number of resources available to process the intrinsic load and germane
    load (i.e., learning) is reduced.

  • [45] In this framework, the benefits of an interactive feature (such as easier cognitive processing) need to exceed its cognitive costs (such as motor coordination) in order
    for an embodied mode of interaction to increase learning outcomes.

  • Task-invoked pupillary response is one such physiological response of cognitive load on working memory, with studies finding that pupil dilation occurs with high cognitive

  • This construct provides a relatively simple means of comparing instructional conditions, taking into account both mental effort ratings and performance scores.

  • [5] Some researchers have compared different measures of cognitive load.

  • The elderly, students, and children experience different, and more often higher, amounts of cognitive load.

  • With this article, cognitive load researchers began to seek ways of redesigning instruction to redirect what would be extraneous load, to now be focused toward schema construction
    (germane load).

  • [3][4] Task-invoked pupillary response is a reliable and sensitive measurement of cognitive load that is directly related to working memory.

  • [38] These elements help reduce cognitive load in children as they develop.


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