Cognitive load theory, element interactivity, and the testing and reverse testing effects

Jose Hanham, Wayne Leahy*, John Sweller

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    10 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The testing effect arises when learners who are tested rather than relearning material obtain superior scores on a final test than those who relearn. Based on cognitive load theory, six experiments examined whether the effect was evident under low or high element interactivity (a measure of complexity) conditions. Students learning to write types of text were participants. In all experiments, effects on a final common test of two presentations were compared with a single presentation followed by a preliminary test. The testing effect on immediate tests was larger and more likely using lower element interactivity materials. A reverse testing effect was likely on immediate tests tapping higher element interactivity material but possibly eliminated by using a delayed test.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)265-280
    Number of pages16
    JournalApplied Cognitive Psychology
    Volume31
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - May 2017

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