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Information Overload

What is information overload?

And what can be done by students, teachers, and especially
teacher-librarians in order to reduce it?

This page explains what information overload is, how it affects students and teachers, and what can be done to minimise its occurrence and effects. Teacher-librarians are ideally positioned to both raise awareness and provide information or training on how to combat information overload.

Information overload is "when the amount of input to a system exceeds its processing capacity" (Gross, 1964, in Interaction Design Foundation, n.d.). Teachers need to pay attention to potential information overload, because:

"Once capacity is surpassed, additional information becomes noise and results in a decrease in information processing and decision quality. ... [H]aving too much information is the same as not having enough" (Ruff, 2002, p.4).

What is information overload? 

Rising Above the Fog:

Strategies to Combat Information Overoad

(Prezi presentation created by Shannon Thiessen Burton, 2019)

Prezi Informtion Overload.jpg

Where does this come from? References and Resources:

Interaction Design Foundation. (n.d.). Information overload, why it matters and how to combat it. Retrieved from 


Learning Mind. (2019). 10 symptoms of information overload and how it affects your brain & body. Retrieved from 


OSLIS Elementary Videos. (2017, October 2). Evaluating websites (for elementary students). Retrieved from 


Pillay, S. (2017, June 7). The ways your brain manages overload, and how to improve them. Retrieved from 


Ruff, J. (2002). Information overload: Causes, symptoms and solutions. Harvard Graduate School of Education's Learning Innovations Laboratory (LILA), 1-13. Retrieved from

TeachThought. (2017, February 14). 10 tips & tools to deal with information overload. Retrieved from 


Wellmon, C. (2012). Why Google isn’t making us stupid…or smart. The Hedgehog Review, 14(1). Retrieved from 


All images in Prezi have permission for noncommercial reuse in Creative Commons, with thanks to Lewislbonar and j4p4n (, from Wikimedia Commons.

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