How the bimodal format of presentation affects working memory: An overview

Serena Mastroberardino, Valerio Santangelo, Fabiano Botta, Francesco S. Marucci, Marta Olivetti Belardinelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The best format in which information that has to be recalled is presented has been investigated in several studies, which focused on the impact of bimodal stimulation on working memory performance. An enhancement of participant's performance in terms of correct recall has been repeatedly found, when bimodal formats of presentation (i.e., audiovisual) were compared to unimodal formats (i.e, either visual or auditory), in providing implications for multimedial learning. Several theoretical frameworks have been suggested in order to account for the bimodal advantage, ranging from those emphasizing early stages of processing (such as automatic alerting effects or multisensory integration processes) to those centred on late stages of processing (as postulated by the dual coding theory). The aim of this paper is to review previous contributions to this topic, providing a comprehensive theoretical framework, which is updated by the latest empirical studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-76
Number of pages8
JournalCognitive Processing
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2008


  • Bimodal
  • Dual code theory
  • Multimedia learning
  • Multisensory interaction
  • Unimodal
  • Working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience


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