Sunday, May 15, 2016
New research suggests whether information is presented electronically or on paper affects the way we process it
New research suggests whether information is presented electronically or on paper affects the way we process it.
By Tom Jacobs - Pacific Standard
Old-fashioned books — that is, bound volumes of printed pages — are making something of a comeback. Admittedly, the fact their sales increased in the United States between 2014 and 2015 can be attributed to nostalgia, novelty, or some other fleeting factor.
Then again, perhaps readers of fiction (as well as complex, nuanced non-fiction) have intuited that reading a physical volume is a different, richer experience than doing so on an e-reader.
That’s one implication of new research. A study unveiled Tuesday offers evidence we process texts differently if we are reading them on paper, as opposed to an electronic device
It finds we remember concrete details better if we’ve read a work on a laptop or tablet. We grasp the larger inferences of a story more thoroughly, however, if we’ve read it in print. MORE