"Since the beginning of year 2020, the global economy, education, culture and ecology have been dramatically impacted by the outbreak of COVID-19. In order to sustain the process of learning, the distance education has become one of the preferred options. In this article, the distance education and the concepts of information processing theory will first be introduced, followed by elaborating the possible barriers to which students will encounter in the distance education and the factors which influence the learning effectiveness will be discussed. Meanwhile, suggestions regarding the course design and teaching methods will be provided for different stages (i.e. perceptual encoding, central processing, responding and feedback) which are described in the information processing theory. Through reconsidering the process flow and details of course design in distance education, it is anticipated that students’ learning motivation can be elevated and, in turn, the ability of active learning can be cultivated to ensure their competitive advantages."