ERIC Number: EJ1030322
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Jul
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 25
Multimedia's Effect on College Students' Quantitative Mental Effort Scores and Qualitative Extraneous Cognitive Load Responses in a Food Science and Human Nutrition Course
Andrade, Jeanette; Huang, Wen-Hao David; Bohn, Dawn M.
Journal of Food Science Education, v13 n3 p40-46 Jul 2014
Effective use of multimedia (MM) in instructional design is critical for student learning, especially for large lecture introductory courses. This study used a mixed-method approach to explore the effect of food science supporting course materials that utilized different MM formats, designed with Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning (CTML) methods, on cognitive load as explained by perceived mental effort (PME) scores combined with students' perceptions. College students (n = 182) were randomized into 1 of 3 MM groups: audio + text + graphics (Group 1-ATG); text + graphics (Group 2-TG); or video + audio + text + graphics (Group 3-VATG). Participants answered a demographic survey and prior knowledge questionnaire before viewing 3 food science supporting course materials (that is, food laws, quality assurance, and sensory tests) and completed the PME instrument and open-ended questions online in a noncontrolled setting. For quantitative data, PME scores were compared among MM groups and content types using analysis of variance (ANOVA). For qualitative data, content analysis was applied to identify extraneous cognitive load (ECL)-related descriptors from students' open-ended question responses, which were used to explain quantitative survey findings. Overall, students in Group 2-TG had lower PME scores than Groups 1-ATG and 3-VATG (P < 0.05) and participants in Group 2-TG provided less ECL-related comments than those in the other 2 groups. Across MM groups, students showed higher PME scores after reviewing the quality assurance course material (P < 0.05). Additionally, despite higher PME scores, students from Groups 1-ATG and 3-VATG would take another course with these MM formats. Practical Implications: This study investigated the appropriate use of CTML methods when designing supporting course materials with various MM formats for asynchronous learning. The findings showed that instructors should consider different effects of MM formats when designing online course materials. In addition, instructors should apply mixed-method approach to evaluate effects of MM design on students' perceived cognitive load levels that cannot be fully understood with only quantitative survey data.
Descriptors: Multimedia Instruction, College Students, Introductory Courses, Mixed Methods Research, Foods Instruction, Cognitive Processes, Theories, Difficulty Level, Scores, Student Attitudes, Video Technology, Audio Equipment, Visual Aids, Printed Materials, Student Surveys, Prior Learning, Questionnaires, Content Analysis, Instructional Effectiveness, Comparative Analysis, Asynchronous Communication, Technology Uses in Education
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A