ERIC Number: EJ1021401
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Abstractor: As Provided
Amazing Stories: Acquiring and Avoiding Inaccurate Information from Fiction
Rapp, David N.; Hinze, Scott R.; Slaten, Daniel G.; Horton, William S.
Discourse Processes: A Multidisciplinary Journal, v51 n1-2 p50-74 2014
Authors of fiction need not provide accurate accounts of the world, which might generate concern about the kinds of information people can acquire from narratives. Research has demonstrated that readers liberally encode and rely upon the information provided in fictional stories. To date, materials used to demonstrate these effects have largely included stories taking place in real-world settings. We tested whether readers might exhibit more conservative use of information from stories with unrealistic settings and characters, as in science fiction and fantasy genres. In two experiments, participants read texts containing accurate, misleading, or neutral information, embedded in realistic or unrealistic stories. They subsequently completed a general knowledge test that included probes for story information. Unrealistic stories, in comparison to realistic stories, led to reductions in the use of misinformation. Source monitoring judgments suggest explanations for these reductions. The findings offer intriguing possibilities for encouraging readers' critical evaluation of text content.
Descriptors: Fiction, Accuracy, Information Utilization, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Undergraduate Students, Context Effect, Difficulty Level, Evaluative Thinking
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Publication Type: Reports - Research; Journal Articles
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A