Cognitive effort and skill acquisition

There are many factors that influence skill acquisition, learning, and practice such as observational learning, augmented feedback, practice schedules, and organization. Furthermore, much effort in motor production lacks cognition especially when a performer repeatedly executes a complex motor task (such as a golf swing on the driving range). The performer shifts from a planned execution of the skill to a more automatic process in which action requires little cognitive effort. This assignment will allow you to explore questions surrounding skill acquisition such as the consequence of practice that requires little cognitive effort, the importance of cognitive effort as a function in skill acquisition, and methods for manipulating practice or the learning environment to increase cognitive effort without overwhelming the learner.

General Requirements:

Use the following information to ensure successful completion of the assignment:

  • Instructors will be using a grading rubric to grade the assignments. It is recommended that learners review the rubric prior to beginning the assignment in order to become familiar with the assignment criteria and expectations for successful completion of the assignment.
  • Doctoral learners are required to use APA style for their writing assignments. The APA Style Guide is located in the Student Success Center.
  • This assignment requires that at least two additional scholarly research sources related to this topic, and at least one in-text citation from each source be included.
  • You are required to submit this assignment to LopesWrite. Refer to the LopesWrite Technical Support articles for assistance.


Write an essay (1,500-1,750 words) in which you will explore cognitive effort and skill acquisition. In your essay, include the following:

  1. A statement demonstrating the impact of cognitive effort on practice. An empirical examination of whether cognitive effort is important or necessary for motor skill acquisition.
  2. An empirical examination of whether cognitive effort is important or necessary for motor skill acquisition.
  3. A statement explaining how the learning environment could be manipulated to increase cognitive effort.