In instructional development one is often advised to take individual perceptional preferences into account when designing audiovisual materials. Perceptual and learning‐style research literature, however, offers no clear evidence for modality preferences for video or audio. The same holds for other interlocking symbolic modalities: verbal and pictorial, and reading and listening. Here, too, no such thing as individual modality preference has been clearly proved. A relatively strong support is given to the dichotomy between visualizers and nonvisualizers. There is not always a clear discrimination in the research literature between these various dichotomies. Audiovisual design must deal with learner characteristics such as perceptual preference in the same way as it deals with other characteristics such as reading proficiency and prerequisite visual literacy: by building on optimal prerequisite information and intuitive knowledge about the target group. There is not yet a legitimate theoretical basis for typological diflerentation within the target group.