ERIC Number: ED215311
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1982-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
Pre-Passage Questions: The Influence of Structural Importance.
Wilhite, Stephen C.
A study examined the differential effects of previewing textual information with questions containing higher-order versus lower-order information. The 104 college students in the study read three passages, each of which was preceded by different combinations of questions about information high or low in the structural hierarchy of the text, then completed a vocabulary test and free-recall tasks on the selections. The results indicated that questions directing the subjects' attention to material at the top of the organizational structure facilitated the effective encoding of the central organizational idea within the passage segment. Indirect recall (recall of nonquizzed information) was greater for high-level questions than recall in both the low-level question condition and the no-question condition. A significant interaction also was found between subjects' vocabulary ability and question condition. The facilitative effect of high-level questions declined with increasing vocabulary ability. This interaction is consistent with the view that high-ability and low-ability people differ in their tendency to use the superordinate organizational structure of the passage and thus in their tendency to benefit from processing aids such as adjunct questions. (Author/RL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Mental Health (DHHS), Bethesda, MD.; National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Illinois Univ., Urbana. Center for the Study of Reading.; Bolt, Beranek and Newman, Inc., Cambridge, MA.