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Visual reading aids, such as handouts and online guides, help learners to maintain Attention and serve to support the learning process. When instructors use visual reading aids, especially when introducing new materials, learner Motivation and engagement can increase. Cognitively, visual representations also support Working Memory during learning and help individuals to retain new information into Long-term Memory. This can be especially helpful for those learners with learning disabilities and other special needs. Visual reading aids can also assist instructors in differentiating material to address a variety of learner needs in the learning environment.
Use It In Your Learning Environment
Instructors can use handouts to set expectations for the class and guide learner efforts as well as to deliver content. When using handouts and other visual aids, instructors should use a mix of graphics and text to minimize the learner's cognitive load and to support Visual Processing. Relevant graphics should be used to support the text to deepen comprehension. Digital products could support the creation of infographics to help instructors display information in connection with pictures and graphs to aid the learning process.
Handouts and visual aids can be interactive when instructors provide spaces for students to input text to increase engagement. Digital products should have the capability to include text boxes to record learner responses to text. These products should also include communication features, allowing learners to access peers or instructors for support.