Reading hypertexts


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Print vs non-linear texts: do we need to rethink our reading models?

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  • 8.0 means that an eighth grader between 7.0 and 8.0 is generally considered easy reading. technical sites between 7 and 12 on the Flesch-Kincaid readability score. read by the subjects as part of their work between 9 and 11. All the subjects graduation as a minimum educational qualification: readers at that level are expected to understand texts of a difficulty level of 12. However, many students read "below their grade level": the average adult reads at the 8th grade level and college graduates at the 10th grade level (DuBay, 2006). Keeping in mind all these factors and that all the subjects of this study are ESL readers, a range of 9 – 10 was fixed as the readability level for texts chosen for the study.
  • Reading hypertexts

    1. 1. EFFECTS OF LANGUAGE AND PRIOR KNOWLEDGE LEVELS ON COMPREHENDING ONLINE TEXTS Dr Kshema Jose The English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad
    2. 2. Reading Hypertexts Confusing? Enabling? OR
    3. 3. Rationale • Developing reading comprehension abilities in the electronic medium • ICT literacy an essential component of new age literacy skills • Interactive hypertexts: tool for supporting reading comprehension and building Higher Order Reading Skills • New literacies perspective: traditional reading skills may not be sufficient to acquire information from texts on the Internet
    4. 4. The Study • Identify factors that contribute to reading and comprehending web texts successfully. • Provide insights into the consequences of using hypertexts to develop reading comprehension (Spires and Estes, 2002). • Exploratory Paradigm: throw light on factors that might influence a process and variables that might affect a product, thus help form hypotheses (Miles and Huberman, 1994).
    5. 5. Theoretical Background • Schema Theoretic View • Interactive theory of reading • Construction-Integration model (Van Dijk and Kintsch: 1983) • Changing Nature of Texts: The New Literacies perspective • Cognitive Flexibility (Spiro, Feltovich, Jacobson, and Coulson, 1991).
    6. 6. Prior Research in Hypertext Reading • Users might face ‘navigation disorientation’ and ‘cognitive overload’ (Conklin, 1987; Edwards and Hardman, 1989; Seyer, 1991). • Promotes deep comprehension: Reader factors like high levels of language and availability of relevant prior knowledge can compensate for the lack of text coherence (Burbules and Callister, 2000; Reinking, 1997). • Comprehension deficits due to lack of prior knowledge can be overcome with self-navigating texts (Hofman and van Oostendorp, 1999; Potelle and Rouet, 2003).
    7. 7. Questions addressed in this Study • Do self-navigating hypertexts work equally well for other reader types – especially those who may be disadvantaged by lack of adequate linguistic competence and/or gaps in appropriate prior knowledge? • Does the availability of a vast amount of support aids have the potential to help readers overcome their language or prior knowledge deficits?
    8. 8. Design of the study Same pattern followed with low L2 (LL2) readers.
    9. 9. DATA COLLECTION • Think-aloud protocol: transcribed, parsed into utterances and coded based on van Dijk and Kintsch categories • Retrospective interview • Free recall • Summary of text – either spoken or written: assessed for the quantity, type and presentation of information recalled.
    10. 10. Three High L2 readers reading familiar texts Number and percentages of clauses generated Averages of free recall scores HL2 hpk Surf Txt Sitn HL2 hpk FR PR: 103 17 16.5% 73 70.8% 13 12.6% PR 10 PS: 212 5 2.3% 127 60% 80 37.7% PS 19 SN: 131 7 5.3% 72 54.9% 52 39.6% SN 13
    11. 11. Three High L2 readers reading unfamiliar texts Number and percentages of clauses generated Averages of free recall scores HL2 lpk Surf Txt Sitn HL2 lpk FR PR: 98 25 25.5% 54 55% 19 19.3% PR 9 PS: 173 14 8% 112 64.7% 47 27% PS 21 SN: 89 28 31.4% 47 52.8% 14 15.7% SN 9
    12. 12. TOL excerpts PRE-STRUCTURED, FAMILIAR TEXT • I need something more about accessibility, scrolls down the article talks of step-by- step procedures to change an existing site. Scans Let me click this link first Understanding the basics using text format • Retrofitting your site means… I read it somewhere before… scrolls up to check makes use of phrases like ‘in other words’ and ‘or’ it means repairing a site that already exists… see after building a site then you go back and look at it, I think this going back is called “retro” fit it with things that are needed to make it accessible. That’s the meaning of retro-fitting… let me check the dictionary and see… using both print and web formats • The 10 quick tips is also very useful, it tells us… these are all things you could straight away use. So always look for brief texts like this, better still are bullets. Cut out the theory, long stories… web text format • How do we prioritize which issues need to be repaired first? Earlier ,… where… here!... didn’t we just say, depending on what customers say, or based on what guidelines set as mandatory… integrating parts of text now here’s some more… So this would also mean that this link has to be first cos it is the first step...can’t do anything else before inferencing with the help of prior knowledge using both print and web formats
    13. 13. TOL excerpts PRE-STRUCTURED, UNFAMILIAR TEXT • I am not sure if I know… can understand the meaning of this text... checks online dictionary It says reading is a cognitive process, meaning it is an activity of the brain, needing perception, reasoning, judgment, etc…. Ok, it is not a single process, it consists of several sub processes, cognitive is what goes on in the brain I think, you know when we read and think and all how the brain works. That’s good, how did they see and study all that? web text format • The summary says two very different things: one is that these mechanisms of the brain are not built just for the sake of reading alone, because they have been around for many centuries but reading developed only recently… Skims and locates the last para to confirm interpretation – print text format • Saccade is the small lateral eye movements that allow us to see (reads out link contents and realises that sufficient comprehension has not occurred) I click on parafoveal vision it leads to other links, I don’t understand this…lemme check perceptual and then I will see if I need to google… What silly links, I think I need a wiki or google… See mostly the first entry will be the best, or see if they have it in wiki, I think that’s best for all kinds of readers. otherwise what we need to do is look for glossary, dictionary kinda things in the list. I think it’s all the same... This might be for readers who are experts no? young kids don’t read like this, ok this is for those whom reading has already become an unconscious activity… let me see how my eye moves… – moves from surface to deep levels of comprehension metacognition, activating background knowledge, inferencing, utilising web format
    14. 14. TOL excerpts PRE-STRUCTURED, UNFAMILIAR TEXT - contd • Computational model… but it’s not explained here in this link? Maybe I will google because this is needed for me to understand the basics - breaks expectations • …Wernicke is for comprehension and broca takes input from here and helps in speech production. So it is not like Wernicke and broca together you see, like I thought so in this para… points to Neurophysio… section. – connecting different parts • See there are some more links on broca, cognitive science etc. if anyone wants it. I don’t want to cos am not very interested in knowing all these. See what the summary said, I have understood that info, so it means… I don’t need to look in detail at all these – web format
    15. 15. TOL excerpts SELF-NAVIGATING, FAMILIAR TEXT • Process oriented will mean? Why is it not here?... but I don’t want to check the dictionary, that’s too many windows… think I will but…the process of making a website?... yeah maybe as opposed to a product oriented methodology. Isn’t this what this is all about? All the different steps and all, the processes… then meaning process-oriented… I think I read that somewhere above… where did that go?, there must be an intro… am not sure Trails off and moves to the next section • Overview and details are both available. I will click on both and read overview first. I like to close the windows as I finish reading them, not pile up too many windows… very confusing it becomes then… – Print format • If this has links then we will mainly look at them only. That’s also why am not looking at other pages outside the text… It becomes all very confusing. – Web format
    16. 16. TOL excerpts SELF-NAVIGATING, FAMILIAR TEXT - contd • Scrolls down overview Is that an overview? It’s too too long – Print format • Processes and elements on separate nodes are linked, but I don’t know the connect… Why the same thing… facts… coming on two different links? this is like way too much and way off info, we may not want to go there at all. See, sometimes I think additional info only makes the existing info more complicated. – contrary to expectations • What is new here? looks for only new or additional info. … here’s a diagram. This is what I like with these texts… one can always get hold of a diagram. The elements and processes are interconnected… That much I understand. But how is this part connected to the baaki text? What is the connection?... Which link will tell me about this?... It is not clear at all - web format
    17. 17. TOL excerptsSELF-NAVIGATING, UNFAMILIAR TEXT • But what is politexts? It is not linked… I think the text will talk about that. And after some reading What is politexts, am not sure, is it about politics and texts? Let’s see. Late age of print…35 nodes and 180 links, why would anyone want to read so much? Right now am trying to find out what politexts are… where will the answer be? It’s not even linked - web format • I will click each of these and then come back to this page. - web format No but this can’t be an order of the text, see how definitions come at the end? – Print format So I will read the first link first and see if I should go to the definitions part first, immediately. • I won’t look at define some terms …anyways I haven’t come across several new terms that need an explanation. - web format Opens each link, skims, makes a judgement, and hits back button • I think way in and way out will tell me a pic of the whole text. Let’s see. • When I click problems of literacy I go to definitions, so I think it’s time I read this. • The brief statement of the argument, couldn’t this have gone earlier? – Print format • Problems of literacy but it is not talking about problems of literacy, I would have liked to know more about this though, I think it should not be called this, but, terms defined. – contrary to expectations • How tools came to be is not an interesting section, because it has no direct relation to what I am reading. So then what should I read first? What can come first? – Print format
    18. 18. TOL excerpts PRINT, FAMILIAR TEXT • What is this “The other contribution” so this that was mentioned earlier is their contribution? What is it? Where is it available? - web text format • A reference table is also a BUSINESS RULES. The term “business rules” has a slightly different interpretation at Dulcian. Who is Dulcian? or what is Dulcian? An organization? See I could have googled for this now. - web text format PRINT, UNFAMILIAR TEXT • Obtain history to identify high risk patients and history of high-risk foods, but what is history? I think this is heavy medical terminology… Dictionary… I need one - web text format • IgE is formed against a food antigen in a susceptible person. One IgE is formed as a reaction against food antigen? Reads again See one can maybe understand if one has a lot of time, but then if you have internet then all this time can be really saved, one get really easy ways… texts easy to understand. - web text format • Then there’s testing through radioactive and all epicures testing for diagnosis... This paragraph doesn’t have many points… I mean I don’t understand. Goes to last para. Warn patients to avoid food that causes anaphylaxis, Use medicines like epi-pen and anakit, how to prevent, we must tell the patients not to eat food causing allergies… Okay. Now I will go back to the first paragraph… - print text format • See, now this table makes sense. They should give so much info at the beginning no? - web text format • But I need some more information… these are only injections? where is this info available? Is this the only text talking about this… food allergies? - web text format
    19. 19. Three Low L2 readers reading familiar texts Number and percentages of clauses generated Averages of free recall scores LL2 hpk Surf Txt Sitn LL2 hpk FR PR: 84 41 48.8% 30 35.7% 13 15.4% PR 7 PS: 119 17 14.2% 76 63.8% 26 21.8% PS 11 SN: 107 44 41% 51 47.6% 12 11.2% SN 3
    20. 20. Three Low L2 readers reading unfamiliar texts Number and percentages of clauses generated Averages of free recall scores LL2 lpk Surf Txt Sitn LL2 lpk FR PR: 62 24 38.7% 36 58% 2 3.2% PR 4 PS: 102 71 69.6% 27 26.4% 4 3.9% PS (4 statements ) 1.3 SN: 49 33 67.3% 15 30.6% 1 2% SN (2 statements ) .6
    21. 21. TOL excerpts PRE-STRUCTURED, FAMILIAR • I think about the title I know it’s talking of making website accessible. Including for people handicapped. I know somewhat about these things cos you see we have been doing this into many things. using text format knowledge • Web Content Accessibility Guidelines is called WCAG, short form no? Documents explaining make Web content accessible is available here. using web text format knowledge • Web content is information inside Web page, can be writing text, rereads images, forms, sounds, and such. WCAG is part of one series of accessibility guidelines… including Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines (ATAG) and the User Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG) to set targets. This here link will say this. using web text format knowledge • How do we set targets? Some times customers say barrier issues, and some cases sites told to meet these many accessibility issues now… like that. Who says? Ah! These guidelines agencies. So these has to be made first. And then we need to communicate this to the users. – integrating paragraphs using text format knowledge
    22. 22. TOL excerpts PRE-STRUCTURED, UNFAMILIAR • Reading is cognitive process, no? heading is this… a cognitive process… and then there is processes, so how many processes? – using text format knowledge • See everything looks like important when we have everything is underlined, and we have everything is a link… breaks expectations • Neurophysiological what is it? clicks the first link on this page basis of reading is telling about different body parts. Neurophysics for blind people? Wrong conclusions drawn from visiting links So many things are here. Then I don’t know what should be first reading. It is much difficult. – using text format knowledge • I think I will read plain long text and concentrate. Then I will look in another site – using text format knowledge • I want Neurophysiological (googles and reads) … is telling about different body parts, head, brain, eye parts that are used in reading information. • Yes, see we need eyes for reading, and then in the brain we are.. use the brain to understand meaning. So then it is not neurophysics for blind people? corrects wrong interpretations
    23. 23. TOL excerpts SELF-NAVIGATING, FAMILIAR • The first link am clicking is overview link, reason why because… I want overview discuss WD is about. Everybody has overview link on homepage itself. It is a good useful link. This article… gives you complete info about developing content for www. It also says about methodologies… a person called John December has given…– using text format knowledge • It is a new methodology, the process oriented methodology for creating webs using hypermedia, websites for the www. What I will read now? How to go to next para now?... back now or front? – breaks expectations of text format knowledge • See here “Developing Information Content for the World Wide Web” is also meaning to say… easy for understanding for everybody… quickly if you say “Content Development” this we all know what is it… short also… – text format knowledge
    24. 24. TOL excerpts SELF-NAVIGATING, UNFAMILIAR • This is to examine the future of literacy. Hence I am using the unpronounceable locution e-literacies, but this meaning is not there in the meaning here and… dictionary… - breaks expectations • and the agon of a discipline… agon? What is the meaning of this word? • So I have had to try to create my own si – mu – la - crum of a textual domain. There are so many new words am not aware of the meaning of… - absence of support (word meaning) expected from web texts • But this is very difficult for me. Nothing is meaning sense. I am not understood… anything much. I think I will read again, but I am not reading all these links, only plain what is here… once more and I will see. - Looking for linearity
    25. 25. TOL excerpts PRINT FAMILIAR • logical business rules community founded by Ron Ross and Terry Moriarty… the name The Business Rules Group… a traditional systems person call this system requirement. Activate prior knowledge • We too do like this you know, we also have an expert… So that is why it is saying then a BUSINESS RULES approach is something that good system analysts have been doing for years. But this community also bringing up a lot of new things also. …renaming of old things that was done by them… They came up with the first taxonomy of BUSINESS RULES, collection? Maybe… • It was very complex, it was difficult for people to represent BUSINESS RULES using grammar. Grammar is always complex no? English grammar also see how difficult it is no? for everyone… too many rules are there… but we represent everything using this English grammar, I think we can. So are there problems with BR grammar? That we will see now. integrate with prior knowledge
    26. 26. TOL excerpts PRINT UNFAMILIAR • Patients dying of food allergy usually have a history of gastro trouble, or respiratory problems… or urticaria problems immediately after eating food. This is about children’s food reactions, fatal meaning dying allergies... Very serious. It is a medical article I think. … mechanism is what happens inside our body I think… • In a case 6 young patients with a case of food poisoning died. Many childrens died in school because their parents were not available. Although half many people carrying self injections medicines, epinephrines, with them, they all died, they didn’t have them available in the school and so they died. • Some foods greater threat than others… peanuts and all… and susceptible patients… Most many times these allergies are made by cow’s milk, molluscs, eggs, fish, etc. peanut almonds, cashews also. • Description of symptoms of all foods items… there are many many tests, and we have good qualified doctors who will do this in a hospital. One can use many tests like epicutaneous, not intra tests
    27. 27. Summary of LL2: PS hpk Many Websites are there today having accessibility barriers. So for some people with disabilities it is difficult to be using this site. We have to fix this accessibility barriers issues in existing Web sites. So for this we are trying to understand how handicapped peoples problems affect Web use. So how also different types of disabilities will have different kinds of need. Initial evaluation is required and identify problems first. Then another idea is to also to including people with disabilities when we are evaluation. Then also throughout Web development they should be. WCAG is one example, it is target for accessibility. All the problems are identified and all the barriers very easy to repair are all done first. Then we have to tell this to all through a notice this is called accessibility statement. Then another thing is repair many barriers we can identify them by all the elements that come as the same across many pages. We can repair them only once and then it is corrected everywhere.
    28. 28. Summary of LL2: PS, lpk Broca and Wernicke are in relation to eyesight. Reading contains of many different interlinked processes. Some other activities like parafoveal vision that is part of brain is also discussing. Many models proving us reading aloud is very slower than reading aloud. So we need to encourage this. Many different processes are involved like saccades, parafoveal vision and perceptual span. There are three types we can see.
    29. 29. Summary of LL2: PR, lpk The main idea is that what are causing food allergies in children. So many children dying every year causing from food allergies and this is because they are eating outside food, and also items like peanuts and fish and all. Many of these children who ate these and died was unconscious. They did not know they had eaten these things. Specific IgE is formed then and so then we must take them for testing. So we must be very careful. Children should eat with their parents and not eat from other people’s hands. There is a syringe full of medicine is one treatment for this, self can be done. This is why because we should be giving this to all people before respiring problems start. But it is not asthma. Another way is wearing Medicalert bracelets.
    30. 30. Theoretical Implications Changing Interaction Patterns of text and reader features • Pre-structured hypertexts could help readers overcome prior knowledge or linguistic schemata deficits. • Non-linear text environments do not facilitate deeper levels of comprehension in all. Higher levels of language are required to interact with these texts successfully. • A threshold of language competence or prior knowledge availability seems to be a pre-requisite for accessing networked texts.
    31. 31. Theoretical Implications Implications for text design • Discontinuous text processing (Storrer, 2002) consumes cognitive resources • Cognitive overhead (Conklin, 1987) • Therefore Text Coherence - a major determiner of hypertext reading comprehension. – help readers identify relationship between links – chart out a navigation path – provide text structure cues
    32. 32. Theoretical Implications Affordances ‘The pedagogical activities or practices that the function of a technology enables the user to perform’ (McLoughlin and Lee, 2007). • based on an individual’s experience in reading both print texts and internet texts. • also on language familiarity and/or prior knowledge levels. • several affordances did not enable desired learning outcomes
    33. 33. Technical features of Hypertexts and their learning affordances (McLoughlin and Lee, 2007) Features of the technology (Functionality) Affordances Ability to click on a particular word that is highlighted or underlined Concentrate or focus learner attention on a particular aspect of the artefact (X maybe unnecessary for some learners) Ability to get additional information in the form of multimodal features Readers receive more information regarding that specific aspect of the artefact Accessibility to readers with multiple learning styles (X content and mode not known before clicking link) Ability to go outside a specific text to search for information Readers have access to a wide range of and unlimited resources to facilitate comprehension (X cognitive overload, content-fried) No pre-determined reading order Ability to chart out an individual reading/ navigation path based on one’s purpose of reading, develops metacognition (X navigation disorientation)
    34. 34. Hypertext Affordances – Poor Design Word meaning and text-segment links failed when: • Lack of information regarding link contents • Same content appearing in different links • Mismatch between link name and link contents • Position of links (overview or definitions coming in last) Design that does not include suggestions or clues as to how to use the properties of that object and therefore leads to a conflict between real and perceived affordances (Norman, 1988).
    35. 35. Conclusion • Pre-structured hypertexts with clearly marked word-meaning links offer affordances of comprehension to several groups of ESL readers. • Utilising word meaning links requires a certain level of language OR topic familiarity. • Self-navigating hypertexts do not offer affordances of learning to readers who are below a particular threshold of language and prior knowledge.
    36. 36. Thank You