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ERIC Number: ED355497
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993
Pages: 22
Abstractor: N/A
Legibility of Print.
Bloodsworth, James Gaston
Legibility refers to the physical appearance of printed materials: line lengths, type size, style of type face, space between lines and between letters, margins, and physical format are some of the factors that are involved. After the turn of the century, especially after 1925, research became fairly common in this area, but has been meager since 1950. From the 1800s, the best type of serifs, the effects of descenders and ascenders, brightness contrast between paper and ink, and other factors have been the topic of discussion and research. Based on the findings of various studies, speed of reading is the most satisfactory measure of legibility of type face. Most publishers maintain that 10 or 11 point type is the smallest that should be used in books, but there is no agreement on this subject by modern authorities. Research indicates that two-point leading (the space between lines) appears to be optimal. There is great diversity in the application of factors such as size of page, margins, single and multiple columns, paragraph arrangements, and vertical and horizontal printing. Research indicates that black print on a white background is more legible than white print on a black background, and approximately three-fourths of readers prefer it in this manner. Factors affecting legibility typically are not determined by research, but by persons who publish printed material simply according to their own beliefs and opinions. (Contains 24 references.) (RS)
Publication Type: Historical Materials; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A