Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department

Curriculum and Instruction


Igo, Larry B

Committee Member

Greenstein , Joel S

Committee Member

Horton , Robert M

Committee Member

Peters , Chris L


Digital instruction, whether in the form of training delivered on CD/DVD-ROMs or online courses delivered via the Internet is being used in all levels of education. It can, after all, increase student achievement if designed properly (Moersch, 1999). Many established instructional technologies (e.g. Microsoft PowerPoint®) have been researched to determine effective and ineffective instructional designs. However, newer technologies such as screen-captured videos, have not.
Because the research of newer, multimedia instructional technology is 'in its infancy' (Mayer, 2001, p.194), a timely challenge for instructional technologists is to determine how to design and research these technologies. Theoretical frameworks on which to base these designs include Cognitive Load Theory (CLT) and the Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning (CTML). Each is based on Baddeley's (1992) working memory model that says that our ability to think and process is constrained by working memory limitations.
According to CLT, when learning new information, working memory can be overloaded by ineffectively designed instruction. One effective instructional design technique that can alleviate cognitive overload is the integration of scaffolds that serve as a bridge between what students know and what they have not yet learned.
Similar to CLT, CTML also focuses on how to reduce cognitive load, only within a multimedia-based learning environment. An outcome of CTML is the segmenting effect, in which long periods of instruction are broken down into smaller sections in order to allow for better learning.
Using these techniques, the researcher designed a mixed-methods study, which combined a 2x2 factorial-designed experiment with follow-up, qualitative interviews. Learning effects were tested with 108 participants at a Southeastern university who were given one of four different versions of screen-captured video lessons.
Through the implementation of instructional techniques (scaffolding and segmentation) designed to decrease extraneous load, the researcher hoped but failed to promote long-term learning. Whereas an immediate test of learning transfer suggested that the effectiveness of the four instructional designs varied, the delayed measure of transfer indicated that those initial differences were fleeting. Several possibilities could explain this effect, including information overload and lack of motivation.

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