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Visual clarity: how it affects eLearning

Did you know that visual clarity greatly affects the way people process information, including in eLearning?

Did you know that visual clarity greatly affects the way people process information? Therefore, it is an essential element in the design phase of an online course.

Understanding the content and how the platform works are two of the key features of an online course. What happens, however, if students are confronted with a confusing text or a messy infographic? Most people experience a negative, rejecting feeling about what they are seeing and, as a result, have more difficulty processing the information in front of their eyes.

Visual clarity, therefore, is an indispensable element in any content or educational platform because it is linked to how we process information and to the primary goal of training, which is precisely the understanding of content. According to academics, so-called "processing fluency" (Wanke & Hansen, 2015) has an incredible impact not only on content processing but also on people's judgments and decisions.

If content is visually clear, people experience a positive feeling and, as a result, this feeling is more likely to stimulate better motivation, comprehension, and memorization of information.

What can eLearning take from this concept? Here are the key learnings and tips related to visual clarity:

1. Everything looks easier

When content is easy to read, learners are more likely to read, study, or perform an exercise.

2. Changes perception

If there isn't enough visual clarity, learners are more likely to think they won't be able to complete what they're reading, the exercise they need to complete, or the recipe they need to prepare. In fact, if the content is laid out unclearly, it will seem more difficult to them than it actually is.

3. Increased credibility

People are more likely to believe that information that is presented in a clear and readable manner is credible.

4. Less original is easier

Students will be better able to process those types of designs or layouts that are more familiar to them because they are easier and more immediate to read. Originality, in this case, is not always the best choice.

Online course designers, then, to ensure greater visual clarity must:

  • prefer symmetry;
  • Use high contrast between background and text or image;
  • avoid putting a large amount of information on the same page;
  • use legible fonts (you can find an article on font usage here).

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