The article describes the idea of Performance Load, and breaks this concept into two aspects, Cognitive Load and Kinematic Load. It discusses the ways in which we can minimise the load of both these aspects, by using good and economical designs of our appliances and user interfaces. The article reasons that “the greater the effort to accomplish a task, the less likely the task will be accomplished successfully” (Lidwell, W., Holden, K., Butler, J., 2003, Performance Load, p148). The effort needed is a direct result of the amount of cognitive and kinematic activity that we are required to show in order to do a task, so if we can limit these loads, it is reasonable that we will have a higher success rate of completing tasks.
In the book Visible Learning and the Science of How We Learn, the authors state that “your mind can quickly become overwhelmed by the number of interactive informational units needing to be processed simultaneously for you to achieve understanding.” (Hattie, J., Yates, G. C. R., 2013, p148). This emphasises the importance of a clean and organised view when attempting to learn visually. The mind is a sponge for information and wants to take as much in as possible, and for this reason, if we try to consume too much information at anyone time we can hinder the learning process.
1. Sweller, J., Ayres, P., Kalyuga, S., Cognitive Load Theory, (2011), Springer.
2. Hattie, J., Yates, G. C. R., Visible Learning and the Science of How We Learn, (2013), Taylor and Francis.
3.Lidwell, W., Holden, K., & Butler, J. (2003). Performance Load. In Universal Principles of Design (pp. 148‐149). Massachusetts: Rockport.
The Mind Tools Editorial Team, Cognitive Load Theory, Accessed on the 23rd of May 2016 from https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/cognitive-load-theory.htm
2. Malamed, C., What is Cognitive Load?, Accessed on the 23rd of May 2016 from http://theelearningcoach.com/learning/what-is-cognitive-load/