Defense Date


Graduation Date

Fall 2015


Immediate Access

Submission Type


Degree Name



Instructional Technology (EdDIT)


School of Education

Committee Chair

Misook Heo

Committee Member

Stephen Hirtle

Committee Member

Carol Parke


Instructional Technology, Learner Characteristics, Multimedia, Verbalizer, Visualizer


The purpose of this study was to investigate visualizer-verbalizer tendencies through the prediction of learner selection of online, multimedia learning options based on the characteristics of cognitive ability, spatial ability, cognitive style, and learning preference. These characteristics were used to predict the selection of text only, labeled image, and image and narration learning options in two, multimedia learning behavior tests via multinomial logistic regression analysis. Results of this study found that the factor of spatial ability influenced multimedia learning options such that as spatial ability increases, the likelihood of choosing labeled image learning option increases while the likelihood of choosing the image and narration learning option decreases. Cognitive style was found to be influential such that, as cognitive style moves towards a visualizer tendency, the likelihood of selecting an image inclusive multimedia learning option (labeled image or image and narration) increases. Learning preference was also found to be influential, as individuals expressing a learning preference for labeled images are likely to maintain this preference through selections of labeled image multimedia learning options. Gender was also investigated as a potential covariate influencing selections with no significant findings.

The overall results from this study indicate that certain learner characteristics and inherent traits do influence how learners select different multimedia learning formats for their own learning and the relevance of visualizer-verbalizer tendencies in these choices. The different influence of spatial ability supports research suggesting that the visualizer characteristic may be further sub-divided into a spatial visualizer category describing those who view imagery as distinct parts to be mentally combined into a whole, and object visualizers who view best imagery as a whole, not requiring further dissection or manipulation.

The findings of this study may further guide instructors, instructional designers, and instructional material publishers in the creation of online or technology enhanced learning materials to suit not only the overall goals of learning but also the individual learners. Online or technology enhanced learning materials may thus take advantage of the appeal of multimedia by incorporating a variety of media designed to guide learners through instructional materials which optimally take advantage of the concepts behind multimedia learning in an effort to create engaging learning opportunities to support learner interest and potentially enhance learning outcomes.