Technological barriers to learning: Designing hybrid pedagogy to minimise cognitive load and maximise understanding

Date of this Version


Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Details

Interim status: Citation only.

Bahr, M., & Bahr, N. (2009). Technological barriers to learning: Designing hybrid pedagogy to minimise cognitive load and maximise understanding. In C. N. Chi-hung & P. D. Renshaw (Eds), Reforming learning: Concepts, issues and practice in the Asia-Pacific region (pp. 87-107).

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2009 HERDC submission. FoR code: 1701

© Copyright Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009


978-1-4020-3002-4 (print); 978-1-4020-3024-6 (online)


Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) provide great promise for the future of education. In the Asia-Pacific region, many nations have started working towards the comprehensive development of infrastructure to enable the development of strong networked educational systems. In Queensland there have been significant initiatives in the past decade to support the integration of technology in classrooms and to set the conditions for the enhancement of teaching and learning with technology. One of the great challenges is to develop our classrooms to make the most of these technologies for the benefit of student learning. Recent research and theory into cognitive load, suggests that complex information environments may well impose a barrier on student learning. Further, it suggests that teachers have the capacity to mitigate against cognitive load through the way they prepare and support students engaging with complex information environments. This chapter compares student learning at different levels of cognitive load to show that learning is enhanced when integrating pedagogies are employed to mitigate against high-load information environments. This suggests that a mature policy framework for ICTs in education needs to consider carefully the development of professional capacities to effectively design and integrate technologies for learning.

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This document has been peer reviewed.