Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

March 2013

CMP Series: Audio/Visual/Neurological

By Barbara Palmer, Senior Editor
don't give up on pop music. If you find the right combination of sound and lyrics that is relevant to your message, you'll have hit a home run. However, as some popular music clearly carries some risk with their lyrics, here are some other options.

  • First Com (firstcom.com) is inexpensive relative to the value. A blanket annual license for unlimited downloads costs $1,200 and offers excellent quality and diversity of music with a huge catalogue.
  • Royalty Free Music (royaltyfreemusic.com) provides inexpensive licenses per download with good quality and a modest catalogue size.
  • American Music Company (americanmusicco.com) is available for a $30 annual registration and then requires a license per use. The music is safe, with a neutral tone selection.
  • Freeplay Music (freeplaymusic.com) is a relatively inexpensive site with licenses available per download, but has a smaller catalogue of music.

Rethinking Learning Styles

Many common training practices are based more on fads and fables than on evidence of what works, according to Ruth Colvin Clark, a leading expert in instructional design. Here, she takes aim at what she has called the No. 1 myth about training: learning styles.

I think learning styles represent one of the more wasteful and misleading pervasive learning myths of the past 20 years. From audio learners to visual learners or from “sensors” to “intuitive,” learning styles come in many flavors. Corporations and universities alike frequently incorporate the concept of learning styles and sometimes even use learning-style assessments as part of their instructor training. For some reason, the idea of a learning style has some kind of cosmic intuitive appeal that is very compelling. Ask almost anyone whether they are a visual learner or a verbal learner and you will get an immediate commitment to a specific learning style!

The learning style myth leads to some very unproductive training approaches that are counter to modern evidence of what works. For example, many trainers believe that visuals should be described by words in text format for visual learners and narration mode for auditory learners. To accommodate visual and auditory learners, a visual on a slide is explained with text and audio narration of that text. This practice has been proved to actually depress learning.

From Evidence-Based Training Methods, by Ruth Colvin Clark, ASTD Press, 2010.

More Resources

Find an interview with molecular biologist John Medina about brain rules and meetings in the November 2011 issue of Convene at convn.org/medina-rules.

To earn additional credit, you can take more more tests in our series here: pcma.co/ConveneCEUs

This Convening Leaders 2013 session kicked off “The Intersection Series: Where Techology Meets Inspiration,” a partnership between PSAV Presentation Services and PCMA. Insightful videos are posted monthly at pcma.org/theintersection.

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