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Text and Graphics In E-Learning

The Multimedia
The inclusion of both text and graphics in e-learning courses. Presentations contain both written words and graphics to help people to learn more profoundly.
  • Beneficial to novice learners

  • Evidence shows that using graphics that relate specifically to the material supports learning
  • Decorative graphics
  • Representational graphics
  • Organizational graphics
  • Relational graphics
  • Transformation graphics
  • Interpretive graphics
The Contiguity
Aligning words to corresponding graphics" (Clark & Mayer, 2011). Written words should be placed near the graphics they refer to and spoken words should align with the graphics being shown.
When words and pictures are integrated, people are more likely to make a mental connection.
  • Printed words should be placed near corresponding graphics.

  • Spoken words should be synchronized with corresponding.
  • Diagrams – when highlighting parts of an object using a diagram, the names should be placed near the corresponding parts using a line that connects the two instead of placing the information in a legend at the bottom of the graphic (Clark & Mayer, 2011).

  • Demonstrations that use audio, or narration, and video to explain a process. For example, a video demonstration on how a bicycle tire pump works. In the video, the spoken words described the actions taking place on the screen. When the narrator’s voice said, “the inlet valve opens,” the animation on the screen showed the inlet valve moving from the closed to the open position. (Clark & Mayer, 2011).

Online examples:

An online example of both principles can be seen in Multimedia Principle, a short video on YouTube. This video explains the multimedia principle using both the multimedia and contiguity principles. Please follow the following link to view the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KeQshlOuk2Y

Another great example of both principles can be seen in the following PowerPoint presentation by Kris Mesler. Please follow the following link to view the presentation:



Clark, R.C., & Mayer, R.E. (2011). E-Learning and the science of instruction: Proven guidelines for consumer and designer of [[#|multimedia learning]] (3rd ed.) San Francisco, CA: Pfeiffer

Kris Mesler. (2009). The Multimedia and Contiguity Principles [PowerPoint slides]. Retrieved from http://www.slideshare.net/kristimesler/multimedia-contiguity-principles-mesler.

magicirwin1. (2011, March 17). Multimedia Principle [Video file]. Retrieved from YouTube website: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KeQshlOuk2Y