Committee accepted with no changes on first submission.


The Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning has enjoyed a prominent role in guiding the development of online instruction, but recent research has proposed boundary conditions for some of its key principles. Moreno and Mayer advanced the possibility of a reverse redundancy effect when narration and fully redundant on-screen text are presented in a temporally contiguous manner. The current study investigated the interaction and main effects of temporal contiguity and verbal redundancy by randomly assigning university students to one of four narrated text-only online lectures. Existing knowledge of the topic of instruction, information literacy, was assessed using a 15-question selected-response instrument developed for this research; the same instrument was later used to collect the posttreatment test data. Two-way ANCOVA analysis of the results revealed that when the pre test scores were accounted for, there was no significant difference in student achievement among the four treatment conditions. This finding held true even when the analysis was limited to low-knowledge students. While the current study’s lack of significant results may be due to methodological issues, it indicates that text-only narrated presentations may not be subject to boundary conditions for the redundancy effect and that previously held beliefs in the negative impact of redundant text and narration are likely not applicable in such situations.

Dissertation available to download at

  • Project Type: Research
  • Topic: Recent research on the Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning
  • Keywords: Multimedia; Learning theory; Mayer; Boundary conditions
  • Project Year: 2020