Cognitive Load Theory (or CLT) is a theory which aims to understand how the cognitive load produced by learning tasks can impede students’ ability to process new information and to create long-term memories. Cognitive load is typically increased when unnecessary demands are imposed on a learner, making the task of processing information overly complex. Such demands include the unnecessary distractions of a classroom and inadequate methods used by teachers to educate students about a subject. When cognitive load is managed well, students are able to learn new skills easier than when high cognitive load interferes with the creation of new memories. By understanding the principles behind cognitive load theory, teachers can optimize the way they present novel ideas to students to make them easier for their audience to understand.
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