Japanese Journal of Audiovisual Education Study
Online ISSN : 2433-0884
Print ISSN : 0386-7714
ISSN-L : 0386-7714
A Fundamental Study on the Effects of Pictures in the Language (L2 English) Education : with a Special Reference to Graphic Devices
Reiko Hojo
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1994 Volume 24 Pages 37-46


In order to clarify the learning effects of pictures, some experiments have been conducted by the author. The results of the experiments showed that pictures, particulary photographs, helped reading comprehension of L2 English and that presenting pictures after reading English prose was more effective than presenting them before reading it. It was also found that a color picture did not improve reading comprehension of learneres. Based on the results of previous experiments, a variable of graphic devices, namely, an arrow, an underline or both them, was introduced in this study, since graphic devices can be most easily added to instructional materials, such as textbooks or courseware of L2 English language. The purpose of this study was to investigate if graphic devices in a picture (i.e. an arrow, an underline, and both of them) could enhance learning effects of reading English prose or not. As an instructional material, the prose passage, "A Strange Shopping Center" was selected from an English textbook for junior high school students. The passage consisted of about 300 words. One picture was chosen and three different types of pictures, namely a picture with an arrow, one with an underline and one with both an arrow and an underline. These cues marked the part of the picture that was considered to be important in relation to the content of the prose. The experiment was conducted in July of 1992 with 145 junior high school students in Niigata Prefecture, who were divided into four groups that were to use four differents types of learning materials, consisting of the three types of materials mentioned above, and the other was a picture which did not have any cue. As a pretest, the scores of a standardized test obtained from the junior high school were used. In the experiment, students read the passage and then looked at the picture. After this, they completed a posttest, which was actually a comprehension test. It included twelve factual questions and eight inferential questions. The subjects filled out a questionnaire with 15 items. About one week later, the subjects were given a retention test, the items of which were the same as those on the posttest, although they were presented in random order. First of all, ANOVA was conducted on the points of the pretest and no significant difference was found. Secondly, ANOVA was applied to the results of the posttest. The results proved that the main effect of cueing was significant in inferential questions. Thirdly, ANOVA was conducted on the results of thr retention test. The results showed that there were no significant differences both in factual and inferential items. Finally, the results of the questionnaire were analyzed using a chi-square test. The results showed that an arrow or an underline made subjects feel the questions more difficult and that learners using the material with both types of cueing showed most favorable attitudes toward each type of cueing. Based of these results, it was found that an arrow could improve reading comprehension, particularly inferential questions, and that it would be most desirable to add an arrow as a graphic device to a picture.

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© 1994 Japan Association for Educational Media Study
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