A Multimedia Tool for Teacher Education and Professional Development

A Multimedia Tool for Teacher Education and Professional Development

Wendy J. Rodgers (University of Virginia, USA), Michael J. Kennedy (University of Virginia, USA), Kat D. Alves (University of Virginia, USA) and John E. Romig (University of Virginia, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-1067-3.ch015


This article describes a tool that can be used in teacher education called Content Acquisition Podcasts (CAPs). CAPs are short multimedia vignettes designed to teach targeted, specific concepts. They are developed in accordance with design principles that are intended to reduce learners' cognitive load (Mayer, 2009). CAPs are simple to create and can be made with readily-available software; this accessibility and their flexible design makes them extremely versatile. They can easily be incorporated into flipped or blended classes. In this article, the authors explain how CAPs are created, describe three ways to integrate CAPs into teacher education and professional development, and explore how CAPs can begin to address the challenges of preparing teachers for a complex working environment.
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Cap Definition

CAPs are short multimedia vignettes that combine carefully-chosen images and words with narration to explicitly teach specific concepts or terms. They are designed according to the principles of Mayer’s Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning (CTML; 2009). According to the CTML, many multimedia products overwhelm learners’ cognitive load because they combine too many visual and auditory elements. This complexity requires learners’ visual and auditory senses to compete for attention, resulting in more attention being paid to sorting out the disparate inputs and less to learning the actual content. Mayer (2009) proposed 12 design principles that are designed to streamline the inputs for learners, thereby lessening the cognitive load demand and allowing for more efficient learning. All 12 principles have been examined and verified through extensive research (Mayer, 2008). Table 1 provides brief definitions for these principles, and a more detailed explanation of them and how they relate to CAP creation is described in Kennedy, Aronin, O’Neal, Newton, and Thomas (2014).

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