E-Books: Cognitive and Visual Effects

Hannah DeGroot Butler University
Faculty Sponsor(s): Brian Day Butler University
Sight is incredibly important to various aspects of daily life. The eyes relay information about our surroundings to the brain so that a reaction can be made. One critical use of this sense is reading, which allows us to use texts to communicate and learn new things. This learning can only be accomplished if the reader is able to effectively comprehend what he or she has read. The advancement of technology has resulted in much of our reading today being done through digital media. Information-presenting screens are found nearly everywhere, including within the education system. While E-books can offer some advantages, their ultimate purpose would not be served if they hindered the understanding of texts. Additionally, excessive use of technological devices caused by E-books can bring about uncomfortable symptoms of eyestrain in readers. It is hypothesized that E-books are in fact neither helpful nor harmful in reading comprehension. In the present study, forty students at Butler University read a short story either on paper or on a laptop screen. They then took a quiz over the plot events of the short story, again either in a physical or digital format. Lastly, they completed a short survey regarding their use of E-books and how their technological interactions affect their vision. The data was analyzed to determine relationships between reading/testing media and understanding/comprehension.
Oral Presentation

When & Where

09:00 AM
Pharmacy & Health Sciences 204