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The European Journal of Communication Research

Ed. by Averbeck-Lietz, Stefanie / d'Haenens, Leen

4 Issues per year

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Volume 40, Issue 4


How to take advantage of tablet computers: Effects of news structure on recall and comprehension

Anna Van Cauwenberge / Leen d’Haenens / Hans Beentjes
Published Online: 2015-11-02 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/commun-2015-0020


In light of the growing use of tablets for news reading and mobile news consumption behaviors, this study examined whether an innovative way of structuring news on the tablet that mimics mobile news behaviors reinforced attention for, and learning from, news. Specifically, it was theorized that the chronological and associative structuring of news articles into so-called developing news stories would lead to more attention for news, and better recall and comprehension of news, than the linear print newspaper structure that newspaper publishers continue to copy from print to tablet. A multiple-day experiment was set up using the eye-tracking method to measure and control for attention. The results show that the developing news structure increased comprehension of news substantively, independently of attention effects; no effects were found on attention and factual recall.

Keywords: attention; news comprehension; news recall; information structure; information processing; tablet computer

About the article

Published Online: 2015-11-02

Published in Print: 2015-11-01

Citation Information: Communications, Volume 40, Issue 4, Pages 425–446, ISSN (Online) 1613-4087, ISSN (Print) 0341-2059, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/commun-2015-0020.

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