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Washington State University

MERIT Laboratory

New media means new research needs.

The MERIT Laboratory is home to multimedia learning research.

MERIT stands for Multimedia in Education: Research with Instructional Techniques.

The use of technology and multimedia in the classroom is not new. But it’s more complex now than ever before. The MERIT Lab has an especially keen focus on improving multimedia instruction, learning, and performance, with consideration of both cognition and affect perspectives.

Our focal areas of research – which is supported through external grants and contracts – currently include using techniques such as concept mapping, refutational text, and self-explanation to address conceptual change, critical thinking, and content learning gains. Further, we investigate multimedia principles (e.g. seductive details, redundancy, etc.) in context of teaching and learning in computer-based multimedia learning environments across various populations.

To what end?

Why do we do such extensive research?

MERIT is part of the Learning and Performance Research Center (LPRC) at Washington State University. The LPRC, as a larger entity, provides an integrated group of laboratories studying program evaluation, human learning and performance, teacher effectiveness, and psychometrics. Graduate students and post-doctoral fellows are trained to take an integrated approach to measurement, cognition, and program evaluation that optimizes the value of both basic and applied educational research. Students working in the Lab, and the LPRC, have the opportunity to work on real-world, pressing educational problems.

Through our MERIT research, we make recommendations on how to apply this research to classrooms, teaching, and learning.

Our work is consistently published in scholarly journals (e.g., Journal of Educational Psychology, Review of Educational Research, Learning and Instruction, Computers & Education, The Internet and Higher Education) and presented at national and international meetings (e.g., American Educational Research Association, American Psychological Association). Our list of publications may speak better to the work we constantly strive to engage in.

If you are interested in collaborating in joining our lab as a graduate student or hiring us to do evaluation work or us   in conducting innovative and useful empirical research in cognition and learning, please contact Olusola Adesope at