ERIC Number: ED198497
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1981-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
Understanding Understanding. Technical Report, December 1978 through December 1980.
Rumelhart, David E.
The schema theory of comprehension as it relates to understanding while reading is reviewed in this report. Several techniques for the study of on-line measurement of comprehension are described that are based on a series of ten stories, each with two versions. The report notes that when subjects were asked to generate interpretations of stories while reading a story line-by-line, they hypothesized about the possible contents of the story and evaluated those hypotheses against the sentences as they read; if they found the new information confirmatory they maintained and further elaborated their hypotheses; and if they found the new information disconfirmatory they eliminated the hypotheses and constructed another consistent with the data. Also, the report notes that reading time measurements conducted on-line appeared to confirm the theory-generating view. The report concludes (1) that in order to understand the comprehension process a detailed description of the schemata that readers have available as well as an account of the conditions under which certain of these schemata are activated is needed, since there is a tremendous amount of knowledge brought to bear on even the simplest story comprehension task, and (2) that the process of comprehension is very much like the process of constructing a theory. (MKM)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Naval Research, Washington, DC. Psychological Sciences Div.; National Science Foundation, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: California Univ., San Diego. Center for Human Information Processing.