Applying Cognitive Load Theory to the Design of Online Learning. Metadata

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  • Main Title Applying Cognitive Load Theory to the Design of Online Learning.


  • Author: Burkes, Kate M. Erland
    Creator Type: Personal


  • Chair: Allen, Jeff M.
    Contributor Type: Personal
    Contributor Info: Major Professor
  • Committee Member: Yeatts, Dale E.
    Contributor Type: Personal
    Contributor Info: Minor Professor
  • Committee Member: Elleven, Russell
    Contributor Type: Personal


  • Name: University of North Texas
    Place of Publication: Denton, Texas


  • Creation: 2007-05
  • Digitized: 2007-07-10


  • English


  • Content Description: The purpose of the study was to investigate the application of cognitive load theory to the design of online instruction. Students in three different courses (N = 146) were measured on both learning performance and perceptions of mental effort to see if there were any statistically significant differences. The study utilized a quasi-experimental posttest-only control group design contrasting modified and unmodified instructional lessons. Both groups were given a posttest to measure knowledge gained from the lesson (cognitive domain of learning) and perceptions of mental effort involved. Independent samples t-tests were used to compare the mean performance scores of the treatment groups (i.e. the sections using redesigned materials) versus the control groups for all three courses. Cohen's d was also computed to determine effect size. Mental effort scores were similarly compared for each group on the overall cognitive load score, for a total of six data points in the study. Of the four hypotheses examined, three (H1, H2, H4) found no statistically significant difference between the experimental and control groups. Negative significance was found between the experimental and control group on the effect of modality (H3). On measures of cognitive load, no statistically significant differences were found.


  • Keyword: Cognitive load
  • Keyword: educational technology
  • Keyword: learning theory
  • Library of Congress Subject Headings: Computer-assisted instruction -- Design.
  • Library of Congress Subject Headings: Cognitive learning theory.


  • Name: UNT Theses and Dissertations
    Code: UNTETD


  • Name: UNT Libraries
    Code: UNT


  • Rights Access: public
  • Rights License: copyright
  • Rights Holder: Burkes, Kate M. Erland
  • Rights Statement: Copyright is held by the author, unless otherwise noted. All rights reserved.

Resource Type

  • Thesis or Dissertation


  • Text


  • OCLC: 179543640
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc3698


  • Degree Name: Doctor of Philosophy
  • Degree Level: Doctoral
  • Degree Discipline: Applied Technology and Performance Improvement
  • Academic Department: Department of Technology and Cognition
  • Degree Grantor: University of North Texas