The use of adjunct displays to facilitate comprehension of causal relationships in expository text

Published on Jan 1, 2009in Instructional Science2.62
路 DOI :10.1007/S11251-007-9036-3
Matthew T. McCrudden20
Estimated H-index: 20
(UNF: University of North Florida),
Gregory Schraw68
Estimated H-index: 68
(UNLV: University of Nevada, Las Vegas),
Stephen Lehman6
Estimated H-index: 6
(USU: Utah State University)
Sources
Abstract
We examined whether making cause and effect relationships explicit with an adjunct display improves different facets of text comprehension compared to a text only condition. In two experiments, participants read a text and then either studied a causal diagram, studied a list, or reread the text. In both experiments, readers who studied the adjunct displays better recalled the steps in the causal sequences, answered more problem-solving transfer items correctly, and answered more questions about transitive relationships between causes and effects correctly than those who reread the text. These findings supported the causal explication hypothesis, which states that adjunct displays improve comprehension of causal relationships by explicitly representing a text鈥檚 causal structure, which helps the reader better comprehend causal relationships.
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We examined the effect of studying a causal diagram on comprehension of causal relationships from an expository science text. A causal diagram is a type of visual display that explicitly represents cause-effect relationships. In Experiment 1, readers between conditions did not differ with respect to memory for main ideas, but the readers who studied the causal diagram while reading the text understood better the five causal sequences in the text even when study time was controlled. Participants ...
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