The Effects of Reading Goals on Learning in a Computer Mediated Environment
Proceedings of the 2005 InSITE Conference
This study measured the effects of reading goals on learning in a computer mediated environment. Reading goals are defined as the purpose one has for reading. Learning is defined as adding to one's prior knowledge. A computer mediated environment is defined as reading text from a computer monitor. 125 undergraduates (77 females) were given one of three reading goals: read to understand the text, read to take a test, or read to teach the material to another student. Then the participants read a
... articipants read a long (3000+ words) passage of text from a computer screen. A computer program written in Microsoft QuickBasic 4.5 (copyright by Microsoft) presented the text on the screen four lines at a time, and measured how long students spent on each page initially, how many times students re-read pages, and how much time students spent re-reading pages. Half of the participants read passages with headings, while the other half read passages without headings. Learning was measured in three ways: recall of the main topics and supporting details of the passage, time spent reading each page of text and time spent re-reading pages, and number of times pages were re-read. Recall of supporting details was significantly greater for the teaching goal than the testing goal. Time spent re-reading was significantly greater for the teaching goal. Students with the knowing goal recalled significantly more supporting details than students with the testing goal. These findings suggest that reading goals do have an effect on learning in a computer mediated environment.