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Saturday, October 06, 20071191697500

The power of imagination

Imagination, with insight and initiative, is necessary for life (Boyd, 1992). Without imagination, team cooperation leading to victory is impossible (Boyd, 1986; Osinga, 2007).

The imagination effect, along with the goal-free effect, the worked example effect, the split-attention effect, the redundancy effect, the modality effect, the completion effect, and the variability effect, is one of the main products of cognitive load theory (Sweller, 2004; van gog, et al. 2005).

Imagining tasks can be superior to studying them when the proper mental structurse already exists (Cooper, et al., 2001; Ginns, Chandler, & Sweller, 2003; Kalyuga, et al., 2003; Leahy & Sweller, 2005). The imagionation effect shows itself dual-channel audio and visual instruction, but not visual instruction alone (Tindall-Ford & Sweller, 2006). Likewise, the imagionation effect appears after integrated but not split-attention instructional presentation of materials (Leahy & Sweller, 2004).

What does all this mean? Stay tuned. For now, a bibliography is below.


Boyd, J.R. (1986). Patterns of conflict. Retrieved October 1, 2007, from Defense and the National Interest. Web site http://www.d-n-i.net/boyd/patterns.ppt.
Boyd, J.R. (1992). The conceptual spiral. Retrieved October 1, 2007, from Belisarius. Web site: http://www.d-n-i.net/boyd/pdf/intro.pdf.
Cooper, G., Tindall-Ford, S., Chandler, P., & Sweller, J. (2001). Learning by imagining. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 7(1), 68-82.
Ginns, P., Chandler, P., & Sweller, J. (2003). When imagining information is effective. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 28(2), 229-251.
Kalyuga, S., Ayres, P., Chandler, P. & Sweller, J. (2003). The expertise reversal effect. Educational Psychologist 38: 23–31.
Leahy, W., & Sweller, J. (2004). Cognitive load and the imagination effect. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 18, 857-875.
Leahy, W. & Sweller, J. (2005). Interactions among the imagination, expertise reversal, and element interactivity effects. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 11(4), 266-276,.
Osinga, F.P.B. (2007). Science, strategy, and war. New York: Routledge.
Sweller, J. (2004). Instructional design consequences of an analogy between evolution by natural selection and human cognitive architecture. Instructional Science, 32, 9-31.
Tinall-Ford, S. & Sweller, J. (2006). Altering the modality of instructions to facilitate imagination: Interactions between the modality and imagination effects. Instructional Science, 34, 343-365.
van Gog, T., Ericsson, K.A., Rikers, R.M.J., & Paas, F. (2005). Instructional design for advanced learners: Establishing connections between the theoretical frameworks of cognitive load and deliberate practice. Educational Technology Research and Development, 53(3), 73-81.

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