Important Quotes about Visual Literacy, Visual Thinking, & Visual Teaching

The ability to look at visual information with perception. A visually literate person understands how visual elements contribute to the meaning of the whole. 

–PBS Media Literacy Glossary (

The ability to recognize and understand ideas conveyed through visible actions or images (as pictures) 

–Merriam Webster Online 

“Visual literacy requires the students be able to both ‘read’ and ‘write’ visual language. In other words, the students learn to analyze and interpret visual information and create and compose their own meaningful forms of visual communication.” 

–Theron Lund and Rob Poole, “A Visual Literacy Lesson for Art and Design,” Knowledge Quest: Volume 36, Number 3 (Jan/Feb 2008) (

Visual literacy in the classroom has become increasingly important as more and more information is accessed through technology. Students must maintain the ability to think critically and visually about the images presented to them in today’s society. 

–Timothy Gangwer, Visual Impact, Visual Teaching: Using Images to Strengthen Learning (2009) 

The studies [of Visual Thinking Strategies] have found that VTS builds critical thinking skills that students transfer to other settings and other subjects, including writing, math, social studies, and science. VTS produces measurable academic growth in students with varying ethnicities, income levels, and school achievement, including those with limited English skills and poor prior standardized test performance. Over two to three years, VTS students demonstrate significantly greater academic growth than control groups. 

–Visual Thinking Strategies, Research Major Findings (

FACT: Approximately 65 percent of the population are visual learners. 

FACT: The brain processes visual information 60,000 faster than text. 

FACT: 90 percent of information that comes to the brain is visual. 

FACT: 40 percent of all nerve fibers connected to the brain are linked to the retina. 

FACT: Visual aids in the classroom improve learning by up to 400 percent. 

FACT: Students who are twice exceptional (2e) are often visual learners. 

–Visual Teaching Alliance home page (

Students as Creators: Learning by Design (constructivist concept): 

In this process, the student assumes the role of the producer rather than the consumer of information. Through classroom construction of a multimedia project, an in-depth understanding of visual communication, or visual literacy, is learned along the way. 

–Erin Reisland, “Visual Literacy in the Classroom” 

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