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ERIC Number: EJ1174335
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018-Apr
Pages: 26
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1055-8896
The Contribution of Text-Highlighting to Comprehension: A Comparison of Print and Digital Reading
Ben-Yehudah, Gal; Eshet-Alkalai, Yoram
Journal of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia, v27 n2 p153-178 Apr 2018
The use of digital materials in educational settings is common, despite evidence indicating that comprehension of digital text is inferior to comprehension of printed text. A potential solution to this problem is to use learning strategies for deeper text processing. Text-highlighting is a strategy known to improve comprehension of printed text; however, its contribution to digital reading comprehension is not clear. A between-subjects design was used to examine the influence of active text-highlighting on the comprehension of a college-level expository text, displayed either in print or digitally. Results for the without-highlighting condition replicated previous findings of inferior comprehension of the digital text relative to the printed one. When participants were instructed to use text-highlighting, performance improved only in the printed condition. Specifically, text-highlighting improved accuracy on questions that required inferential processing, but it did not affect performance on literal questions. Qualitative and quantitative analyses of the highlighting patterns in each media did not explain the differential effect of text-highlighting on comprehension in these settings. These findings bring into question the usefulness of text-highlighting as an effective strategy for learning from digital text. Thus, emphasizing the need for more systematic research on the effectiveness of traditional learning strategies in digital contexts.
Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education. P.O. Box 1545, Chesapeake, VA 23327. Tel: 757-366-5606; Fax: 703-997-8760; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Israel
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A