Degree Granting Department
Toru Shimizu, Ph.D.
Maria dePerczel Goodwin, Ph.D.
Judith Becker Bryant, Ph.D.
Doug Rohrer, Ph.D.
James A. White, Ph.D.
working memory, learning theory, linear programmed instruction, intrinsic programmed instruction
Programmed Instruction was a dominant force in educational research during the 1960’s and early 1970’s. During this period a new cognitively oriented psychology of education arose that eventually replaced the behaviorally driven research into programmed instruction. For some reason little work was done on integrating these two approaches. This study was designed to test a programmed instructional system based on the intrinsic programmed instructional technology of Crowder (1961) but incorporating design elements derived from cognitive load theory (Sweller, 1988). Specifically, this study tested a multimedia programmed instructional system (CLT-PI) based on work by Mayer (2001) against a text based system (TXT), a traditional linear programmed instructional system based on Skinner (1954, 1958)(LPI), and an intrinsic programmed instructional system based on the work of Crowder (1960, 1961)(IPI). Three hypotheses were tested; 1) Programmed instruction would produce higher long-term retention and transfer scores than TXT, 2) IPI would produced higher long-term retention and transfer scores than LPI, and 3) CLT-PI would produce higher long-term retention and transfer scores than LPI or IPI.
115 undergraduate university students were randomly assigned to one of four conditions where they studied a chapter on human sleep. Each condition was presented on a computer with a test following study. A long-term test was given 4 weeks later. Both short- and long-term tests contained retention and transfer questions. Analyses were conducted using repeated measures MANOVA. A series of ANOVA tests were conducted to determine specific effects and interactions.
The first hypothesis was partly supported in that CLT-PI and IPI produced higher long-term retention scores than TXT. LPI, however, did not. Tests for hypothesis 2 found IPI better than LPI, but only for long-term retention. Tests for the third hypothesis found that CLT-PI produced higher long-term retention scores than TXT or LPI. Longterm retention scores for the two intrinsically based programs, CLT-PI and IPI, were equivalent. No significant differences long-term transfer effects were seen. The retention tests support past research on multimedia instruction but the lack of significant differences for transfer do not. Possible effects related to study time and an effect for auditory narration were discussed.
Scholar Commons Citation
Brazas, Michael L., "Cognitive Load Theory and Programmed Instruction" (2005). Graduate Theses and Dissertations.