The Multimedia Principle: A Meta-Analysis on the Multimedia Principle in Computer-Based Training
Abstract: This meta-analysis examined the multimedia principle as it applies to computer-based training. Results revealed a significant difference (p<.001) with a medium-high effect (r=.48) on achievement when learners were presented with single vs. multiple representations in a multimedia environment. There was a significant difference (p<.001) and a medium-high effect (r=.45) for low-level knowledge; however, there was not a significant difference (p=.06) for high-level knowledge but there was a high effect (r=.5). The most surprising finding of this analysis was the limited number of studies that met the inclusion criteria. After an exhaustive review of the literature, there were only five studies with eleven effect sizes that could be used. For designers and developers to justify the time and cost to develop multiple representations, there must be a significant body of work to help quantify the return on investment.