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ERIC Number: EJ1136253
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jan
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-1931-4744
The Power of Fiction: Reading Stories in Abnormal Psychology
Janit, Adrian S.; Hammock, Georgina S.; Richardson, Deborah S.
International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, v5 n1 Article 16 Jan 2011
We compared the instructional efficacy of a narrative text (i.e., a story) and an expository text (i.e., a textbook excerpt). Students enrolled in Abnormal Psychology classes read about the disorder, "dissociative fugue" from a story, a textbook, or both. The story contained literary elements that increased transportation into the story world. We predicted that this would facilitate memory encoding and improve subsequent test performance. Students who read the story achieved higher quiz scores and evidenced greater free recall about the disorder than those who read the textbook. They also reported greater transportation into the discourse. The combined reading conditions were more efficacious than either alone. The advantage of having read the story was evident up to 3 weeks later when students were retested. Our results suggest that, across text genre, the experience of being transported into discourse accounts for greater test performance over time.
Centers for Teaching & Technology at Georgia Southern University. IJ-SoTL, Georgia Southern University, Henderson Library 1301, Statesboro, GA 30460. e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A