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ERIC Number: ED562189
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Oct
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 29
Sound as Affective Design Feature in Multimedia Learning--Benefits and Drawbacks from a Cognitive Load Theory Perspective
Königschulte, Anke
International Association for Development of the Information Society, Paper presented at the International Association for Development of the Information Society (IADIS) International Conference on Cognition and Exploratory Learning in the Digital Age (CELDA) (12th, Maynooth, Greater Dublin, Ireland, Oct 24-26, 2015)
The study presented in this paper investigates the potential effects of including non-speech audio such as sound effects into multimedia-based instruction taking into account Sweller's cognitive load theory (Sweller, 2005) and applied frameworks such as the cognitive theory of multimedia learning (Mayer, 2005) and the cognitive affective theory of learning with media (Moreno, 2006). Proceeding from the assumption that sound is an incisive means to affect people's emotional state it is argued that sound may also be well suited to stimulate involvement and motivation in learning situations, thereby bringing the learner to invest more mental effort into learning, which finally leads to better learning performance. This paper refers to an experimental case study, which was carried out within the framework of a Master's Thesis at the University of Applied Sciences Bremerhaven (Germany). In order to investigate the cognitive effects of including sound into multimedia learning, two groups of 1st semester Digital Media students were asked to learn about a historic subject using two different experimental designs: One version of a prototypical learning application consists of a photo slideshow with accompanying audio narration and another version consists of the same material supplemented with environmental sounds that illustrate the content of the lesson. Comparing both groups, the results don't reveal significant differences in learning performance. However, the subjective mental effort ratings of the participants are identified as a positive predictor for the performance score and are thus hypothetically discussed as being an indicator for learner motivation. The analysis finally confirms that the learner involvement, which is a measure relating the performance score and the mental effort ratings (Paas et al., 2005), during the subsequent achievement test is significantly higher when sounds were presented during instruction. These results suggest that the inclusion of sound may have positive effects on motivation and learning, which is according to a cognitive-motivational theory. [For the full proceedings, see ED562093.]
International Association for the Development of the Information Society. e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Germany