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1.This document is FCS 8571 one of a series of the Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida. Publication date: January 2001. Please visit the EDIS Web site at http://edis.ifas.ufl.eduThe Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer authorized to provide resea rch, educati onal information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function without regard to race, color, sex, age, handicap, or national origin. For information on obtaining other extension publications, contact your county Cooperative Extension Servi ce office. Florida Cooperative Extension Service / Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences / University of Florida / Christine Taylor Waddill, Dean 2.George O. Hack, MEd, Assistant In, Family Nutrition Program, Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences, Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, 32611. FCS 8571Are Two Channel Presentations Superior To One Channel Presentations? 1George O. Hack2Teaching Tip # 1 Although it seems apparent that two channel presentations are superior to one channel presentations, there have been a number of studies conducted to test this belief. A number of studies have generated the following findings: a.) Using audio media along with other media may enhance understanding of content, b.) Using audio to direct attention in a visual is essential to avoiding misinterpretation of the visuals message, and c.) Audio is much more capable of commanding attention when used as an interjection on the visual media (Thompson, Simonson, Hargrave, 1992). Other recent studies have examined the Dual Processing Theory of Working Memory. This theory proposes that there are two working memories, one for the audio channel and one for the visual channel, each with a limited capacity. Effective learning takes place when representations are taken in by each store, organized, and then connections are made between the stores (Mayer, Moreno, 1998). Further, when one channel is used to convey all information (example: using written text as part of the visual instead of audio) the limited store of the one channel often is stretched beyond its capacity, creating what is called a cognitive overload. Mayer and Moreno conducted a study on two groups of college students. One group received two channel instruction from a video while the other received one channel instruction using the same visuals, but with the audio track replaced by written text. The results were consistent: The students that received instruction through both the audio and the visual channels had greater retention of content than those that received instruction through one channel. This SplitAttention Effect in multimedia learning is a compelling reason for teachers to incorporate two channels in their instruction. References: Thompson, A.D., Simonson, Michael R., Hargrave, Constance P. (1992). Educational Technology: A Review of the Research Washington DC: ACET Mayer, R.E., Moreno, R. (1998). A Split Attention Effect in Multi-Media Learning: Evidence for Dual Processing Systems in Working Memory, Journal of Educational Psychology.