Performance Load

Performance Load

Week 11 – Learning Portfolio Item 1 – Q1

“Information in working memory lasts only around ten seconds” (What is cognitive load?) n.d) Cognitive load reduces the mental workload because performance decreases when the task is split between the textual and displayed information, which increases the cognitive load. (Johnson, A. Proctor, W. R. 2004. p. 252) Cognitive load has a direct effect on the amount of the information that is taken in because the working memory only holds a limited amount of information. Cognitive Load can be managed through general learning strategies. (Cognitive Load theory of Multimedia Learning (Sweller) n.d) said that Learner goals are important because they determine the cognitive pattern. The Learnability of a design should be easy enough to use immediately which reduces the mental ability to work out how a device functions. Too much information on the use of a device will directly affect the manner in which information is synthesized in working memory (Sweller, 2003).

Kinematic load is the degree of physical activity needed to complete a task.  Good design should be able to successfully reduce the amount of kinematic load on an individual.  The lack of kinematic load is also attractive, it can make a design more appealing and overall easier to use.

Reference List

What is Cognitive Load? (n.d). Retrieved from

Cognitive Load Theory of Multimedia Learning (Sweller). (n.d) Retrieved from

Johnson, A. Proctor, W. (2004). Attention: Theory and Practice. Michigan, United States: Sage Publications.

Paas, F. Renkl, A. Sweller, J. (2003) Cognitive Load Theory: A Special Issue of Educational Psychologist. New Jersey, United States: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates inc.

Helping you to reduce your performance load?

 Devices that reduce your performance load?

Week 11 – Learning Portfolio item 2

Figure 1. TV remote - (alaTest, 2011)

TV remote

The TV remote reduces peoples Kinematic load because they can control their Television from a distance. If they want to switch it off or change the channel then they don’t have to psychically keep getting up to control the television.  Also, as a device the buttons functions are clearly labelled and grouped together, this reduces people cognitive load because they don’t have to remember which button performs which function because symbols are used on the remote to tell people what that specific button does. The TV remote is certainly the laziest device to mankind’s laziest inducing machine.

Figure 2. Calculator - (emovingstorage, 2010)


A calculator is another device that reduces Cognitive and Kinematic load. It functions easily, simply pressing in buttons that display the mathematical input. This requires no strenuous movements or activities, just a small finger movement. The main function of a calculator is too reduce the cognitive load placed on a person. It instantly calculates an equation without the use having to think about it. Therefore, the user doesn’t have to mentally apply themselves to calculating the sum. It is done instantly and easily with the calculator.

Figure 3. Dishwasher - (Maria, 2010)


The dishwasher reduces the kinematic load of washing plates, bowls etc. Washing manually with a sponge requires physical activity but a dishwasher reduces this. Technology replaces the need for hours of washing by the users own ability to set the machine to specific functions like time, load etc.  Also, the dishwasher can get more washed in less than time, directly managing the work that someone has to perform.

Reference List

 TV Remote. (2011). In Samsung TV Remote Controller. [Digital Image] Retrieved June 2, 2011 from,34/

 Calculator. (2010). In 19 Mortgage Calculators. [Digital Image] Retrieved June 2, 2011 from

Dishwasher. (2010). In Latest Trends in Home Appliances. [Digital Image] Retrieved June 2, from

Psychology of Design

Psychology of design

Week 11 – Learning Portfolio item 1 – Q3

As human beings we are all naturally structured the same way with arms, head etc but our personal preferences are totally unique to our psychology i.e favourite colour. We are not all joined by a single idea. It is this type of psychology that makes us independent.

Companies tend to base their designs on a universally appreciated design elements. However, if these products are designed to match someone’s personal preferences then ( Kontouris in Burgoine , 2010 ) said that we shouldn’t have to think about good design, we should  know it from recognition. Good design should influence the way we feel about a product.

As we all differ; we individually separate what we prefer in a design and what we don’t.  A design may be attractive to me that may not to others.  A specific design will never be universally appreciated .This a consequence of individual personalities and thought.

Reference List

Burgoine, L. (2010)  The Psychology of Design. Neoskomos. Retrieved from



Week 11 – Learning Portfolio item 1 – Q3 

Chunking is a learning strategy where information is broken down into smaller groups so it is then easier to remember. (Bozarth, J. 2010) says that information must not be divided in a scattershot way; it has to have some sort of meaning. Information that is broken down must have some relevance to the area in which you wish to learn. If the information isn’t relevant then the process of “chunking” becomes meaningless.

The human mind can only hold a certain amount of information at any one time. Therefore, a design which enables people to reduce their cognitive load will be more popular as the capacity of the memory depends on the size of information and the information type (“Chunking Information,” n.d )  Therefore, from a designers point of view, what they envision must  look  engaging but also be simple enough to understand i.e designs with less buttons will be easier to understand because a wide range commands will be enabled by a lesser number of buttons. Therefore, people naturally break down the information on how to use the device and its distinctive functions.

People use different methods of chunking when collecting information. Each method relates directly to how easy the individual finds that method. The different methods of chunking are: Organising information into groups. Finding patterns (links) within the information which inhibits having to list separate pieces of information. Organising your information based on its meaning and content. Creates easier learning patterns and breaking information down into smaller, easier to learn pieces of information.

Reference List

Chunking information. (n.d) Retrieved from

Bozarth. (2010). Chunking Retrieved from