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Wiberg, N. & Myrberg, C. (2015). Screen vs. paper: what is the difference for reading and learning?. Insights, 28(2), 49-54
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Screen vs. paper: what is the difference for reading and learning?
2015 (English)In: Insights, ISSN 2048-7754, Vol. 28, no 2, p. 49-54Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We have all seen the newspaper headlines: screens make us read slower, learn less deeply, remember less and sleep worse. Is this why students prefer to print out their electronic textbooks? We suspected it was habit and attitude rather than measurable cognitive effort during reading that made people prefer print texts, but we needed evidence. We decided to find out what recent research had to say on the subject and read scholarly articles addressing the issues of the actual reading and/or learning processes involved in reading on screen compared to on paper. We then considered these results in relation to our own experience of using tablets and teaching scholars and students how to use their tablets/smartphones in their work.

Habit and attitude appeared to be important, and a digitally born textbook is by far the best alternative to a print textbook when it comes to studying. But even those who prefer to read on screens are originally native paper readers, and as long as the existing application interfaces cannot address the shortcomings of screens regarding spatial landmarks, we will keep returning to paper under certain circumstances.

We would like to see developers make more user-friendly e-readers, and authors and publishers learn to fully utilize of the potential of the e-book.

E-books, learning, reading comprehension, human computer interaction, digital literacy
National Category
Human Aspects of ICT Learning
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-260048 (URN)10.1629/uksg.236 (DOI)
Available from: 2015-08-18 Created: 2015-08-14 Last updated: 2015-08-18Bibliographically approved
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0002-5151-359X

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