Learning from information overload

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Recently I found myself reading and viewing patient education materials.  With all due respect to the health professions I found the experience overwhelming.

I began to think about my own teaching.  Like the health professionals I have to cover a great deal of content at one time–often at a time when the learner is already anxious.

How can I cover the content in a less overwhelming way?  Perhaps I can use advance organizers to prepare learners for a lesson?  Perhaps I can cover only the most pressing content in a session and send along supplemental materials afterward?  Though I don’t have a single answer, my own information overload has me asking the question.