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ERIC Number: EJ1078323
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-1436-4522
Metacognitive Load--Useful, or Extraneous Concept? Metacognitive and Self-Regulatory Demands in Computer-Based Learning
Schwonke, Rolf
Educational Technology & Society, v18 n4 p172-184 2015
Instructional design theories such as the "cognitive load theory" (CLT) or the "cognitive theory of multimedia learning" (CTML) explain learning difficulties in (computer-based) learning usually as a result of design deficiencies that hinder effective schema construction. However, learners often struggle even in well-designed learning environments. In this theoretical paper, I will argue that cognitive resources-oriented theories such as the cognitive load theory might profit from extending their predominantly cognitive focus to one that additionally considers metacognitive and self-regulation demands. Empirical results on learning from multiple external representations and research on tool use are integrated to illustrate that computer-based learning environments usually pose a variety of cognitive, metacognitive and self-regulatory demands on learners which require knowledge and skills that learners often lack. Specifically, empirical findings suggest that most learners are unable to regulate their learning automatically. I thus argue that these activities consume working-memory resources as do activities that are closely related to schema construction. My article concludes with suggestions on how the concept of metacognitive load can be incorporated into resource-oriented theories such as the CLT to explain a wider variety of phenomena.
International Forum of Educational Technology & Society. Athabasca University, School of Computing & Information Systems, 1 University Drive, Athabasca, AB T9S 3A3, Canada. Tel: 780-675-6812; Fax: 780-675-6973; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A