Some of the biggest areas of study include animation as it relates to cognitive load theory, animation and engagement, and tools that enable the creation of animation for learning.
Cognitive Load Theory
A brief clarification and explanation of Richard Mayer, et. al, cognitive load theory:
“The coherence principle refers to the idea that minimizing the amount of irrelevant material in a given presentation is effective for reducing cognitive load (Mayer & Moreno, 2002). When greater amounts of information are conveyed in a multimedia presentation, the student’s cognitive resources are under greater stress from the additional informational load. Intuitively, the coherence principle makes sense because minimizing words, pictures, and/or sounds frees up cognitive resources by reducing the total amount of information processing required for a given multimedia presentation. If the student has to process and discard irrelevant information in order to extract the meaningful content, then the limits of their attention are being pushed unnecessarily. There is incidental processing that occurs when irrelevant information is present, which results in a reduction in cognitive capacity that hinders the ability to process essential information (Mayer & Moreno, 2003).
Similar to the coherence principle, the redundancy effect refers to the notion that students are better able to understand a multimedia presentation when words are presented to them auditorily as opposed to shown in on-screen text and auditorily. This is due to the fact that visual working memory becomes overloaded with the text on-screen, especially if there are other pertinent images or diagrams (Mayer & Moreno, 2003). ”
Reducing Cognitive Load in Multimedia Learning,
Roy Arguello, Faculty Mentor: Patricia Cheng, Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles
Winter 2016 pp. 176-185