Book: Cognitive Load Theory by @Garnett_S via @CrownHousePub

Published by Crown House Publishing

Cognitive Load Theory A Handbook For Teachers













  • The book does not go into great depth about the theory, but explores elements of CLT that make it accessible to teachers.
  • Examples through different subjects are offered through the book, helping develop an understanding into learning connections.
  • Offers a few practical activities that can be used in the classroom to support learning.
  • Examines the four key teaching points, and how CLT fits within.
  • Book endorsed by the theory originator, John Sweller.

  • CLT claimed to be the single most important thing that teachers should know.
  • Steve Garnett’s new handbook opens up the basics of CLT, making the theory accessible to all teachers.
  • 14 CLT effects at play and consideration is needed for the four components of each lesson.
  • Book offers ideas, advice and resources to help implement CLT ideas.
  • Click here to view the book on Amazon UK

Supported by Crown House Publishing

The brain is a complex structure, and understanding how we learn and retain information continues to draw theories among psychologists, educators and cognitive scientists. Recently, educators have been drawn towards learning more about Cognitive Load Theory (CLT), which was developed by New South Wales based emeritus professor John Sweller. Indeed, one of the UK’s most leading educational academics, Dylan Willam argued that CLT ‘is the single most important thing that teachers should know.’

It was that social media posting that got Steve Garnett researching the concept of Cognitive Load Theory as an opportunity to train the principles to teachers, and also write his new handbook for teachers, to help implement with daily classroom activity. Part of this process was to start a dialogue with the originator of the theory. The result is a pocket-sized handbook helping teachers and schools to understand the core theoretical frame as well as implement the theory into teaching and learning. In essence, there are 14 CLT effects at play, and consideration is needed for the four components of each lesson: introducing a new topic; teaching new skills/knowledge; checking for recall and understanding, and; pupils demonstrating understanding. CLT, it is claimed, addresses the need and perspective of the novice learner and so is an instructional model.

With the theory briefly explained, Steve considers the four teaching points noted, advising how to implement the theoretical ideas into classroom practice, covering any school-based subject. Exploring how to teach complex concepts within individual lessons and how the brain interprets the information being offered by the teacher is explained, with an emphasis on making connections to previous learning or reasoning. Examples are illustrated to help the reader understand the connections within a variety of popular subjects.

The book progresses to explore other important factors that can distract learning points, such as redundancy effect and transient information effect, but also to examine collective working memory effect, and a few other effects that can help process information into long term memory.

For any teacher or school leader who is wanting to know how CLT could fit into the teaching, to support students working memories develop and retain important learning, then this is a great book to start. Steve doesn’t go heavy with the science or theory but has produced an accessible guide that can support teachers to understand some of the best ways that young people can learn.

Click here to see our CLT dedicated Wiki page, showcasing resources and further reading.

*Price correct at time of publication

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About @digicoled 447 Articles
Colin Hill - Founder, researcher and editor of ukedchat. Also a bit of a tech geek! Project management, design thinking, and metacognition.

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