I am re-reading Multimedia Learning by Richard E. Mayer to refresh some of my eLearning principles. If you work in any facet of the multimedia learning world, it is an extremely useful book to have in your library. It is not a light read. I am on my third way through it and am only now understanding many of the principles that the author is covering. The first time I read it was more of a skim and scan, and I have built up to a full read having learned a lot more about multimedia and the principles that drive using it as a learning medium.
There are 12 principles outlined in this book, and all of them are valuable in eLearning. While this book is not written directly for eLearning, the principles apply. A lot of this book tells us to keep it simple and how pay attention to how information is executed.
In multimedia, less is more, but we have a lot of information to give to learners and little time to get it to them. Many principles teach us how to reduce, group, and segment to maximize time with learners. All graphics should be deliberate and organized in order to be useful for learners.
Another important concept within these principles is the human element. Robotic voices or information that is delivered that does not sound conversational is distracting. This does not mean a human needs to be shown in the learning. A human standing on the side of the screen talking adds little value. The content should be personalized using sound instructional design methods and vocal talent is better than robotic voices from screen readers.
There are 12 principles in all, and they are listed conveniently at the back of the book. To understand the principles, the entire book should be read, but the end may be a good place to start.
Have you read this book? What other books do you recommend for Learning and Development? Let’s talk about that and anything else on your mind in the comments below!