A picture is worth a thousand words.
Regardless of the method of instruction a person chooses, audiovisual (AV) tools can significantly enhance the impact of that method. Learning to use AV tools effectively can take time, but the long-term gains in learning for students are worth the early investments. Visual aids are especially important for the visual learners who like to see what they're learning, but even for others, the extra reinforcement of a visual image can make the difference between a student's vague awareness and clear memory of a concept. For visual learners, a picture is worth a thousand words. Similarly, audial aids can enhance learning for word-oriented students. Indeed, some evidence suggests that certain kinds of music can prepare the mind to learn at phenomenal rates regardless of its orientation. Whatever an instructor's preferred and dominant instructional style, proficiency with a variety of AV tools can increase his or her teaching effectiveness.
Audiovisual tools can include everything seen and heard in the classroom, from how an instructor dresses and gestures, to the arrangement of the room, to the chalkboard, flip charts, props, slide-and-tape programs, tape recordings, overhead projectors, films and videos, and computer projections.
Instructor dress and gestures
An instructor is an AV tool. Students see and hear an instructor and what they see and hear will either add to or detract from the learning they take away. A class focusing on production-floor dynamics conducted by an instructor wearing, for example, suspenders and a pin-striped suit sends a mixed message to the audience, and, subtly, undermines the credibility of the session.