Four Ways of Considering Emotion in Cognitive Load Theory

Jan Plass, Slava Kalyuga

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

We discuss four ways in which emotion may relate to cognitive load during learning. One perspective describes emotions as extraneous cognitive load, competing for the limited resources of working memory by requiring the processing of task-extra or task-irrelevant information. Another perspective shows that encoding, storage, and retrieval of information are affected by emotion even before awareness of the material, and that emotion may directly affect memory by broadening or narrowing cognitive resources, and by mechanisms such as mood-dependent and mood-congruent processing. A third perspective describes how emotion may affect intrinsic cognitive load, such as when emotion regulation is part of the learning outcomes. We also discuss a dual-channel assumption for emotions. A final perspective is that emotion affects motivation, and, in turn, mental effort investment. These four ways of considering emotion as part of CLT are best understood when taking an interval view of cognitive load.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalEducational Psychology Review
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

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Emotions
Learning
Information Storage and Retrieval
Short-Term Memory
Motivation

Keywords

  • Cognitive load theory
  • Emotion
  • Emotion and cognitive load
  • Emotion and learning
  • Processing models

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

Cite this

Four Ways of Considering Emotion in Cognitive Load Theory. / Plass, Jan; Kalyuga, Slava.

In: Educational Psychology Review, 01.01.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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