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Performance Load Analysis (Item 1 / Q1 Summary)

November 2, 2012 Leave a comment

Figure 1: Human Brain Evolution (Source: Mobile Phone Talk, 2010)

A brief summary of Lidwell, Holden & Butler’s (2003) extract on ‘Performance Load‘ explains that to accomplish a goal, we must use a large degree of mental and physical activity, which in this case, is called Performance Load. If we increase our performance load, there will be a large chance of errors and damage to the performance time, and completion of the goal will be significantly decreased. If we decrease our performance load, they’ll be a significant chance of successfully completing your goal and a minimal chance of error. The two (2) performance loads are; Cognitive Load, which is the use of mental activity, and Kinematic Load, which is the use of physical activity.

Lidwell, Holden & Butler’s (2003) example of Cognitive Load is the use of computers. Many years ago, “early computer systems required users to remember large sets of commands, and then type them into the computer in specific ways.” But now days, we have ‘bar codes’ and ‘scanners’ that can simply be scanned into the computer, this reduces the performance load and decreases the possibility of errors. An extract from Malamed’s (2012) on Cognitive Load explains “[…] the part of our brain that consciously processes information, dominates everything we do in terms of learning.”

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Lidwell, W., Holden, K., & Butler, J. (2003). Aesthetic-Usability Effect. In Universal Principles of Design. (pp. 148-149).

Malamed, C. (2012). The eLearning Coach. What is cognitive load? Retrieved from http://theelearningcoach.com/learning/what-is-cognitive-load/

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