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Working Memory Capacity and Mobile Multimedia Learning Environments: Individual Differences in Learning While Mobile
Article

, , Virginia Tech, United States

Journal of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia Volume 17, Number 4, ISSN 1055-8896 Publisher: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE), Waynesville, NC USA

Abstract

The present study examined the effects of individual differences in working memory capacity (WMC) on learning from an historical inquiry multimedia tutorial in stationary versus mobile learning environments using a portable digital media player (i.e., iPod). Students with low (n = 44) and high (n = 40) working memory capacity, as measured by the OSPAN memory span test, were randomly assigned to either a stationary (n = 54) or mobile (n = 30) instructional environment. In the stationary environment, participants viewed the tutorial while sitting in a chair at a desk in a computer lab. In the mobile environment, participants walked down a hallway following a course indicated by signs on the floor. This walking and navigating, while engaging in the multimedia tutorial, simulated the type of environment one might encounter while walking across a college campus. Overall, students with high WMC outperformed students with low WMC on measures of recall and transfer of the historical inquiry strategy. In addition, students in a stationary instructional environment outperformed students in a mobile instructional environment. Finally, interaction effects indicated that low WMC students in a mobile instructional environment performed the most poorly.

Citation

Doolittle, P.E. & Mariano, G.J. (2008). Working Memory Capacity and Mobile Multimedia Learning Environments: Individual Differences in Learning While Mobile. Journal of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia, 17(4), 511-530. Waynesville, NC USA: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved July 8, 2020 from .

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