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Using pictorial mnemonics in the learning of tax: a cognitive load perspective


Smith, BN and Shimeld, SF, Using pictorial mnemonics in the learning of tax: a cognitive load perspective, Higher Education Research and Development, 33, (3) pp. 565-579. ISSN 1469-8366 (2014) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2013 HERDSA

DOI: doi:10.1080/07294360.2013.841652


The scope and complexity of the Australian taxation system (as with other tax regimes) is daunting for many accounting students. This paper documents the implementation of new practices that were initiated in an effort to address some of the challenges faced by undergraduate students studying taxation. Based on the principles of cognitive load theory, summaries of the lecture material became the focus of tutorials. These summaries provided the impetus for teaching staff to experiment with illustrations as a strategic means of delivery. Drawing diagrams and presenting them in the form of pictorial mnemonics proved to be effective tools in helping students understand and synthesize basic taxation concepts, thereby promoting effective deep learning. Both formal and informal feedback was overwhelmingly positive and affirming of this innovative approach to the subject. A selection of the pictorial mnemonics we designed is provided.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Feedback, instructional design, international students, reflective practice, student learning, teaching practice
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Curriculum and pedagogy
Research Field:Economics, business and management curriculum and pedagogy
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Teaching and curriculum
Objective Field:Pedagogy
UTAS Author:Smith, BN (Dr Bernadette Smith)
UTAS Author:Shimeld, SF (Dr Sonia Shimeld)
ID Code:91415
Year Published:2014
Deposited By:TSBE
Deposited On:2014-05-19
Last Modified:2017-11-21

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