ERIC Number: ED184981
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979
Reference Count: 0
Understanding Pictures: A Study in the Design of Appropriate Visual Materials for Education in Developing Countries.
Walker, David Addison
The document attempts to integrate aspects of two lines of research relating to picture recognition and the comprehension of pictorial space. It also describes an empirical study carried out in Nepal which tested rural adult subjects' understanding of topological, euclidean, and projective concepts in regard to real objects and to pictures. The document is divided into two parts. Part I explains the rationale for using pictures in nonformal educational settings and examines two approaches to picture perception (the constructive theory and the registration theory). It also discusses cross-cultural studies of intelligence and examines literature demonstrating that the intellectual demands of village life often do not stimulate higher cognitive processes as identified by Piaget. Part II details the Nepal study which used four samples of adult subjects at various educational levels. Sixteen experiments tested the recognition of depicted objects, the understanding of spatial relationships in concrete situations, and the comprehension of pictorial space. Findings showed the recognition of familiar objects to be easier than the comprehension of pictorial space, a poor understanding of euclidean and projective relationships by the villagers but a higher performance by the furniture workers and engineering students, and an easy grasp of topological relationships in pictures by all the subjects. Conclusions are that the interpretation of pictorial space is an active process which calls for conscious awareness of projective principles, and that the use of pictures where important meaning is carried by projective cues should be avoided. Two teaching strategies are recommended for use in nonformal educational settings. (Author/CK)
Descriptors: Adult Education, Developing Nations, Illustrations, Nonformal Education, Postsecondary Education, Psychological Studies, Recognition (Psychology), Social Science Research, Spatial Ability, Visual Literacy, Visual Measures
Center for International Education, Hills House South, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA 01003 ($6.50)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Massachusetts Univ., Amherst. Center for International Education.
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