How Visuals Help Us Learn

September 5, 2014 Margo Ensz

Daily Genius came up with this awesome infographic detailing how visuals help us learn last month, and this month Edudemic also covered the story. We were inspired by the facts and figures related to visual learning, and have listed them in a reader-friendly fashion below. The original inforgraphic is also included. Enjoy! 


  • 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual
  • The brain can process 36,000 visual cues in an hour
  • The brain takes about 1/10th of a second to get the idea of a visual scene
  • Almost 50% of your brain is involved in visual processing
  • Black and white images garner your attention for about 2/3 of a second
  • Color images garner your attention for 2+ seconds
  • The average consumer’s attention span is only about 8 seconds
  • The brain processes visual cues 60,000 times faster than text
  • 40% of nerve fibers are linked to the retina
  • The use of visuals improves learning outcomes by about 400%



  • Use visuals to help clarify complex ideas
  • Use visuals that represent people, places, and things
  • Use catchy visuals
  • Use visuals that help viewers make connections and understand new information
  • Use visuals that help viewers relate new information to what they already know


  • Use poor quality visuals, like things that are pixelated, stretched weird, sized improperly, or don’t fit in the space
  • Use ugly visuals
  • Use visuals that don’t make a clear connection to the material presented
  • Use irrelevant visuals, like a series of shapes that have no meaning
How do you utilize visual learning in the classroom? Do you have any examples of a time classroom visuals aided student learning? Let us know in the comments!

visual infographic resized 600
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