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The influence of QuikScan (QS) on reading comprehension, recall and information search by blind and visual impaired readers

Kasch, J. (2014) The influence of QuikScan (QS) on reading comprehension, recall and information search by blind and visual impaired readers.

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Abstract:Background: QuikScan (QS) is a new and innovative text design that implies several text signaling devices such as headings and numbering. It is designed in order to facilitate text comprehension & recall but also information search. By using several within-document summaries, the reader gets informed about the gist of each segment of the text. The summaries consist of numbered sentences that correspond to topic sections. Aim: Research on QS has mainly focused on the effects for comprehension, recall and text search by sighted readers. This study aimed to examine effects of QS texts on the reading processes of blind and visually impaired readers. Method: Three experiments were conducted in this study. During the first experiment, effects of QS on high-level comprehension and recall were tested by means of a summary writing task. In the second experiment, the effects of QS on low-level comprehension and recall were tested by means of a free recall task. The third experiment examined whether QS facilitates high level, medium level and low level information search. Additionally a short analysis is done of the search strategies blind and visually impaired readers apply when searching in QS and NQS texts. Results: After reading QS texts, participants wrote qualitatively better summaries than after reading non-QS (NQS) texts. No significant results were found for QS supporting low-level comprehension and recall by blind and visually impaired readers. These results were in line with the hypothesis. Additionally, no significant differences were found for the search success in QS or NQS texts. Participants used significant more synonyms when searching in QS texts than in NQS texts. There are indications that blind and visually impaired readers apply different reading strategies when searching in QS and NQS texts. Conclusions: Blind and visually impaired readers benefit of QS texts when writing summaries. This suggests that QS facilitates high-level comprehension and recall, by providing the reader with macrostructure information. Further research is needed with larger amounts of participants to get a more complete view on the effects of QS on information search by blind and visually impaired readers. Keywords: QuikScan (QS), high-level comprehension & recall, information search, low-level comprehension & recall, macrostructure
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/66246
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