Here’s a great article, recommended from a colleague, about how the modality effect works in multimedia learning. If you’re a litigator in the 21st century, this is a must read.
The modality effect is a central issue in multimedia learning [see Mayer (Cambridge University Press, 2005a), for a review]. Sweller’s Cognitive Load Theory (CLT), for example, presumes that an illustrated text is better understood when presented visually rather than orally.
This article also widens the scope of the analysis of moderator variables (e.g. Pace of presentation, Type of visualization, Research group) as well as their potentially confounded effects. Finally, it is argued that, for theoretical reasons, the so-called modality effect cannot be based on Penney’s or Baddeley’s theories and must be explained in a different way.
See the entire article here: http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10936-011-9180-4