• TABLE OF CONTENTS
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 Title Page
 Dedication
 Acknowledgement
 Table of Contents
 List of Tables
 List of Figures
 Abstract
 The problem
 Review of related literature
 Experimental procedures
 Results
 Discussion and implications
 Appendices
 References
 Biographical sketch






Title: Interaction of learner characteristics with learning from analogical models of the periodic table and written texts /
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 Material Information
Title: Interaction of learner characteristics with learning from analogical models of the periodic table and written texts /
Physical Description: xii, 155 leaves : ill. ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Lehman, Jeffrey Richard, 1952-
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 1982
Copyright Date: 1982
 Subjects
Subject: Chemistry -- Study and teaching (Secondary)   ( lcsh )
Periodic law   ( lcsh )
Learning, Psychology of   ( lcsh )
Curriculum and Instruction thesis Ph. D
Dissertations, Academic -- Curriculum and Instruction -- UF
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Thesis: Thesis (Ph. D.)--University of Florida, 1982.
Bibliography: Bibliography: leaves 148-153.
General Note: Typescript.
General Note: Vita.
Statement of Responsibility: by Jeffrey Richard Lehman.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00099085
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: alephbibnum - 000319048
oclc - 09267172
notis - ABU5898

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Table of Contents
    Title Page
        Page i
    Dedication
        Page ii
    Acknowledgement
        Page iii
    Table of Contents
        Page iv
        Page v
        Page vi
    List of Tables
        Page vii
        Page viii
    List of Figures
        Page ix
    Abstract
        Page x
        Page xi
        Page xii
    The problem
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
    Review of related literature
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
    Experimental procedures
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
    Results
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
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        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
    Discussion and implications
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
    Appendices
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
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        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 145
        Page 146
        Page 147
    References
        Page 148
        Page 149
        Page 150
        Page 151
        Page 152
        Page 153
    Biographical sketch
        Page 154
        Page 155
        Page 156
        Page 157
        Page 158
Full Text











INTERACTION OF LEARNER CHARACTERISTICS WITH LEARNING
FROM ANALOGICAL MODELS OF THE PERIODIC TABLE
AND WRITTEN TEXTS










BY

JEFFREY RICHARD LEHMAN


A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE COUNCIL OF
THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY




UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


1982




























To my parents, brothers, sisters, and my wife















ACKNOWLEDGMENTS


I wish to express deep appreciation to the faculty

members who contributed to the realization of this study:

Dr. John J. Koran, Jr., supervisory committee chairman, for

the time he spent sharing ideas and reading the manuscript;

Dr. Mary Lou Koran for help in the conceptualization of the

aptitude-treatment interaction aspect of the study; Dr. Mary

Budd Rowe for helpful suggestions with regard to the theo-

retical basis of the study; Dr. James Algina for support

during the statistical analyses of the data; Dr. William

Hedges for useful suggestions for enhancement of the litera-

ture review chapter; and Dr. Robert Wright for many helpful

suggestions throughout the writing of the dissertation.

Special appreciation is extended to Dr. Eugene Todd

for providing me with a teaching associateship throughout my

graduate studies. The experience gained in Dr. Todd's

department was most rewarding.

Finally, I wish to thank Sue Kirkpatrick for typing the

manuscript, and my wife, Kathy, for being supportive and

patient during my graduate studies.

















TABLE OF CONTENTS


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS . . . . . . . . . .


LIST OF TABLES . . . . . .


LIST OF FIGURES . . . . . . . . . .

ABSTRACT . . . . . . . . . . . .

CHAPTER

I. THE PROBLEM . . . . . . . . .

Purpose . . . . . . . . .
Background to the Problem . . . . .
Modified Tables . . . . . . .
Use of the Table . . . . . . .
Summary . . . . . . . . .

II. REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE . . . . .


Cognitive Theory . . . .
Learning from Graphs . . .
Modifications to Visuals . .
Aptitude Treatment Interactions
Summary . . . . . .
Hypotheses . . . . . .


III. EXPERIMENTAL PROCEDURES .

Subjects . . . .
General Procedures . .
The Design . . . .
Treatments . . . .
Instructional Materials
Written Materials .
Periodic Tables . .
Schema . . . .
Measures . . . .
Posttest . . .
Aptitudes . . .


Page

iii


. vii


. . . . . 28

. . . . . 28
. . . . . 28
. . . . . 30
. . . . . 32
. . . . . 34
. . . . . 34
. . . . . 36
. . . . . 37
. . . . . 38
. . . . . 38
. . . . . 39










Page

CHAPTER

IV. RESULTS . . . . . . . . ... . 41

Variables-School N . . . . . .. 42
Instructional Treatment Main Effects . .. 46
Text Questions, Reading Time, and Test Time 49
Text Questions . . . . . ... 49
Reading Time . . . . . ... 49
Test Time . . . . . . ... 51
Aptitude x Treatment Interactions ... . 51
Aptitude x Table x Location . . .. 51
Location Constant . . . . . .. 54
Table Constant . . . . . .. 54
Two-Way Interactions with Other Aptitudes 60
Variables-School 0 . . . . . .. 61
Instructional Treatment Main Effects . .. 65
Text Questions, Reading Time, and Test Time 68
Text Questions . . . . . .. 68
Reading Time . . . . . . .. 71
Test Time . . . . . . . .. 71
Aptitude x Treatment Interactions ... . 71
Aptitude x Table x Location . . .. 71
Two-Way Interactions . . . . .. 73

V. DISCUSSION AND IMPLICATIONS . . . . .. 83

Instructional Treatment Main Effects . .. 84
Modification of the Periodic Table .. 84
Location of the Table . . . . .. 87
Presence of Schema . . . . .. 89
Aptitude x Treatment Interactions ... . 91
Conclusions . . . . . . . .. 97

APPENDIX

A. INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIALS ACCOMPANYING PERIODIC
TABLES: TRADITIONAL PERIODIC TABLE (T),
TABLE WITH ADDED NUMERICAL INFORMATION (N),
TABLE WITH ADDED VISUAL INFORMATION (V) . 100

B. TRADITIONAL AND MODIFIED PERIODIC TABLES . 138

C. SCHEMA SHOWING RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN CHEMISTRY
TOPICS . . . . . . . . ... . 141

D. POSTTEST CONTAINING FORCED CHOICE ITEMS AND
CONSTRUCTED ANSWER ITEMS . . . . .. 145










Page

REFERENCES ... . . . . . . . . .. . 148

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ............... 154















LIST OF TABLES


Table Page

1. Distribution of Subjects by School and Grade
Level . . . . . . . . . . 29

2. Experimental Design . . . . . . .. 31

3. Time and Reliabilities of Aptitude Measures . 40

4. Instructional Materials Data for School N . 43

5. Posttest Data for School N . . . . .. 44

6. Aptitude Data for School N . . . . .. 45

7. Summary Table of Dependent Variable Main
Effects for School N . . . . . .. 47

8. Summary Table for Analysis of Variance for
School N . . . . . . . . .. 50

9. F Table for Testing Aptitude x Table x Location
Interactions . . . . . . . ... 53

10. Intercepts and Slopes for Regression Lines . 58

11. F Values for Aptitude x Table Interactions
Between Aptitudes and Criteria Measures for
School N . . . . . . . . .. 62

12. F Values for Aptitude x Location Interactions
Between Aptitudes and Criteria Measures for
School N . . . . . . . . .. 63

13. Instructional Materials Data for School 0 .. 64

14. Posttest Data for School 0 . . . . .. 66

15. Aptitude Data for School O . . . . .. 67

16. Summary Table of Dependent Variable Main Effects
for School O . . . . . . . .. 69












17. Summary Table for Analysis of Variance for
School 0 . . . . . . . . ... 70

18. F Values for Aptitude x Table Interactions
Between Aptitude and Criteria Measures for
School O . . . . . . . . .. 75

19. F Values for Aptitude x Location Interactions
Between Aptitudes and Criteria Measures for
School 0 . . . . . . . . ... 76

20. F Table for Testing Aptitude x Treatment Inter-
actions Between Vocabulary and Criteria Measures
for School 0 . . . . . . . .. 78

21. Intercepts and Slopes for Regression Lines 79


viii


Table


Page














LIST OF FIGURES


Figure Page

1. Interaction of vocabulary with constructed
answer items for numerical tables at school N 56

2. Interaction of vocabulary with total posttest
for numerical tables at school N . . .. 57

3. Interaction of vocabulary with constructed
answer items for visual tables at school N . 59

4. Interaction of vocabulary with forced choice
items at school O . . . . . . ... 80

5. Interaction of vocabulary with forced choice
items for attached tables at school O ... 81

6. Interaction of vocabulary with forced choice
items for nonattached tables at school 0 . 82














Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate Council
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of
the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy

INTERACTION OF LEARNER CHARACTERISTICS WITH LEARNING
FROM ANALOGICAL MODELS OF THE PERIODIC TABLE
AND WRITTEN TEXTS

By

Jeffrey Richard Lehman

May, 1982

Chairman: Dr. John J. Koran, Jr.
Major Department: Curriculum and Instruction

This study was designed to explore the effects on learn-

ing of structural modifications to the periodic table.

Subjects received a traditional periodic table, a table with

added numerical data, or a table with added visual data.

Subjects used their periodic table alongside corresponding

written materials or were required to turn to the back of

their written materials to use the table as they might in a

textbook. Another purpose of the study was to examine the

effectiveness of including in the written materials a two-

page schema showing relationships between the topics ex-

plained in the written materials and the periodic tables.

Finally, the interaction of learner characteristics with

these treatments was explored.

One hundred and sixty high school students were randomly

assigned to one of eight treatments in a modified posttest









only design. Subjects were given aptitude tests represent-

ing verbal comprehension, associative memory, prior science

knowledge, and fluid ability, which were thought to be

differentially related to learning in each of the treat-

ments, in addition to the treatment materials and posttest

measure.

For the purpose of analysis, subjects were stratified

into two groups based upon previous experience with the

periodic table. Regression analyses revealed that for sub-

jects with minimal experience with the periodic table, those

who received the table with added visual data performed

significantly better on the forced (multiple) choice post-

test items than subjects who received either of the other

two tables. No significant effects were detected for the

location of the table or the presence of the two-page

schema.

For subjects familiar with the periodic table, no

significant main effects were found for type of table,

location of table, or the presence of the schema. However,

significant vocabulary x table and vocabulary x location

interactions were detected when the dependent measure was

the multiple choice portion of the posttest. Subjects high

in verbal comprehension tended to take advantage of the

features of the modified tables, while those low in verbal

comprehension processed the traditional table with less

information most effectively. Subjects low in verbal









comprehension also benefited more from having the periodic

table alongside their written materials.













CHAPTER I
THE PROBLEM


Purpose

The primary purpose of this study was to ascertain the

differences in learner achievement in chemistry resulting

from variations in the periodic table as students used dif-

ferently constructed tables to solve chemistry problems.

An additional purpose of the study was to examine the inter-

action of learner characteristics with the treatments pre-

sented.

Specifically, instructional materials were modified by

placing with the written materials (1) a traditional periodic

table, (2) a periodic table with added numerical information,

or (3) a table with added visual information. Furthermore,

subjects either used the periodic table removed from the

associated written materials or were instructed to keep the

table attached to the back of the materials as is usually the

case in chemistry textbooks. Finally, some subjects also

received a two-page schema which provided a structural net-

work identifying the relationships between the chemistry

topics explained in the instructional materials. It was

expected that these treatment variations would differentially

affect the acquisition of information from the written mate-

rials, and variations in learner characteristics would

influence posttest performance in each treatment.

1









Background to the Problem

Ever since Aristotle's attempt to classify the elements

known during his time, scientists have attempted to organize

the chemical elements. These attempts have produced the

single most used visual aid in chemistry instruction today-

the periodic table of the elements. Today's table was de-

signed to help users of the table systematically organize

observed trends in chemical behavior which might otherwise

appear unrelated (Hyde, 1975).

There are many chemical as well as physical properties

of elements that can be related by using the periodic table.

An element's properties, such as atomic number, atomic mass,

number of isotopes, type of bond formation, electron configu-

ration, state of matter, and relative size, can be incor-

porated into the periodic table. In fact, chemistry

journals have contained numerous articles advocating the

modification of the traditional periodic table which contains

only the chemical symbol, atomic number, and atomic mass.

Mazurs (1974) provided an extensive review of the proposed

representations of the periodic table that appeared in print

between 1869 and 1969. Over 700 tables were published which

Mazurs grouped into 146 types and subtypes. These modified

tables were designed for specific topics in chemistry in-

struction or for chemical research. Not only have scientists

disagreed over the type and amount of content that should

be emphasized on the table, but they have also disagreed









over the form the table should take to best show the

periodic relationships (Shoemaker, 1958). Yet with all the

interest in the periodic table, few educators or publishers

have explored how the table could be modified or used to

result in greater learning from it.


Modified Tables

The shape of the traditional long form of the periodic

table, which has the transition elements located between the

main group elements, has undergone various modifications.

These modifications included Scherer's (1949) spiral periodic

table, Clauson's (1952) space model of the periodic system,

Rice's (1956) helical periodic table, Kow's (1972) octagonal

prismatic table, and Hyde's (1975) lobed periodic table. In

each of these cases the overall shape of the table was modi-

fied to highlight specific relationships between elements.

Scientists have also modified the traditional table by

altering the amount of information presented within each

block on the table. Reese and Meek (1961) proposed a re-

volving block model of the periodic table. Noting the diffi-

culty of crowding mass data into small two-dimensional

blocks, they provided information on all four sides of three-

dimensional blocks which the students then used. McCutcheon

(1950) attempted to modify the traditional table to include

more information by preparing a series of flaps containing

different elements. By the appropriate selection of flaps

he discussed specific elements and relationships that were









relevant at that particular time. In neither case, however,

was an attempt made to determine whether students learned

more from the periodic tables modified by the addition of

information.

Besides modifications in the form of the table and

amount of information on the periodic table, scientists have

also modified the traditional periodic table by using color,

displaying the relative sizes of the atoms, and by using

notational cues. Bean (1980) and Campbell (1946) used

color to distinguish between metals and nonmetals as well as

to represent elements' relative densities. Guenther (1970)

utilized color to show relationships in the electronega-

tivities of elements, while Hyde (1975) used color coding

to indicate relationships between groups of elements.

Regardless of the property stressed, the use of color per-

mitted these scientists to distinguish quickly between

groups of elements based on a specific property.

The relative atomic sizes of the elements have also

been included on many modified tables. Klingenberg and

Springman (1952) stated that useful correlations could be

drawn between the sizes of atoms and ions and their physical

and chemical properties. Consequently, a useful table

should include the relative sizes of atoms. Such tables

were proposed by Cambell (1946), Klingenberg and Springman

(1952), and Sanderson (1956).




5



Finally, Szabo and Lakatos (1957) noted that the

periodic relationships of the properties of the elements

depended not only on the number of electrons in the neutral

atom, but also on an element's electron configuration.

Attempts to illustrate electron configurations with nota-

tional cues placed above columns of elements or within each

block on the table were proposed by Eichinger (1957),

Emerson (1944), Hyde (1975), Miller (1955), Simmons (1948),

and Wagner and Booth (1945). However, none of the above

variations (using color, displaying the relative sizes of

the atoms, or including notational cues on the table) were

specifically derived and developed to accommodate different

types of student characteristics nor were the variations

derived from underlying theories of learning.

As expected, no single table completely satisfied the

interests of everyone. The modified tables mentioned pre-

viously were developed for specific chemical research or

instructional topics. All of the tables were artificial

attempts to organize approximately 100 unique elements in the

most logical way in order to compare the elements' proper-

ties (Sanderson, 1954). Regardless of the table developed,

the main purpose was to draw the user's attention to trends

in the properties of elements. It was generally assumed

that the resulting generalizations derived from the table

enabled students to infer properties about specific elements

based upon a knowledge of the properties of groups of









elements. Yet with all the interest shown in the periodic

table and ways to modify it, not a single educational

research study was performed to determine the relative effec-

tiveness of the different periodic tables for different types

of learners. Instead of continued opinion guiding the de-

sign of tables, research is needed to help determine which

types of periodic tables are most appropriate for specific

topics and for particular types of learners.


Use of the Table

Instructors have used the periodic table to draw atten-

tion to regularities in various physical and chemical prop-

erties of the elements. For instructional effectiveness

the content of the table should correspond with the topics

being taught in chemistry classrooms. In a pilot study of

103 second-semester chemistry students at the high school

level, students listed all of the types of information they

could obtain from the periodic table. The most common

responses included the atomic mass of an element, the atomic

number of an element, and the element's chemical symbol.

These three pieces of information are found on the tradi-

tional periodic table. Other frequent responses included

the metallic or nonmetallic nature of an element, the

element's electron configuration, and the reactivity of an

element-all qualitative properties of elements. These

qualitative properties are not directly obtained from the

traditional table, but students can derive them by









possessing a thorough knowledge of atomic structure and then

transferring that knowledge to the table. When comparing

the information listed by these students with topics con-

tained in current chemistry textbooks, there was substantial

agreement. Therefore, beginning research on modifications

to the traditional periodic table might focus on such

properties as metals and nonmetals, chemical reactivity, and

the electron configurations.


Summary

Although many scientists have advocated modifications

to the traditional periodic table, no attempts were found

that investigated the effectiveness of learning from such

tables. Because students are expected to use the periodic

table throughout the school year to answer questions cover-

ing a wide range of chemistry content, research is needed

to guide the development of periodic tables. The resulting

tables would be appropriate for specific topics and par-

ticular types of learners, and the provision of schema may

make the written materials more useful by providing a link-

ing structure between the written materials and the periodic

table.















CHAPTER II
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE


Cognitive Theory

During the past two decades an increasing emphasis has

been placed on cognitive rather than behavioral interpre-

tations of learning during instruction (Wittrock, 1979).

As part of this emphasis, students were no longer viewed as

passive learners in a stimulus-response setting but rather as

actively processing information between the presentation of

a stimulus and the corresponding response. In this context

the internal activities that students performed after being

exposed to a stimulus included categorizing, devising

mnemonic devices, incorporating new information with prior

learning, and reviewing (Armbruster & Anderson, 1980). All

of these strategies functioned to help students structure

and process new information.

Another type of strategy designed to help students

structure and process information has been the use of

analogy. Because students have traditionally had difficulty

in processing science topics such as atoms, electricity, and

light, analogy has been explored as a mechanism to facilitate

this processing. Although the use of simple analogy has

generated much interest among cognitive psychologists

(Sternberg, 1977; Tversky, 1977; Verbrugge & McCarrell,









1977), little research attention has been given to science

analogies due to their complexity. Recently, though,

Gentner (1980) provided a theoretical treatise in which com-

plex analogies were treated as structure mappings between

two content domains. The attributes of objects as well as

the relationships between objects in one of the domains must

be familiar to learners. Learners process content in the

second domain by mapping, or transferring, their knowledge

of the first domain to the second domain.

As an example of a science analogy, Gentner considered

Bohr's model of the atom. Here the familiar domain is the

solar system which consists of the sun and planets. The

planets are also known to rotate and revolve around the sun.

The atom is the domain to be processed. If mapping is suc-

cessful, learners make the nucleus analogous to the sun and

electrons analogous to the planets. Thus, the view of the

atom becomes electrons rotating and revolving around a more

massive nucleus which is at the center of the atom.

In order to use science analogies effectively, students

must determine whether the attributes of the objects,

the relationships between objects, or both attributes and

relationships are the key features of the analogy to be

transferred between domains. In this regard, Gentner (1980)

found that subjects generally compared relationships be-

tween objects to a greater degree than the attributes of

objects when given an analogy. In fact, subjects stated









that a comparison for which only attributes could be found

was a poor analogy. Consequently, Gentner argued that a

good analogical model in science was one that provided for

a predominance in the transfer of relationships between con-

tent areas.

Other researchers have investigated the importance of

relationships in the storage and retrieval of information

in related areas. Chase and Simon (1973) investigated strate-

gies used by chess players of varying abilities. Expert

chess players reconstructed a chess board significantly better

than novices when the pieces were in positions from an actual

chess game. However, when the chess pieces were placed at

random on the board, the expert's performance was similar to

the performance of the novice. Simon (1974) suggested that

experts chunked familiar stimuli to form a series of pat-

terns which were later recalled from memory. In so doing,

experts reduced the memory burden created by large amounts

of information.

More recently, Larkin (1979) proposed that science

experts stored principles as a group, forming a chunk of

connected material. Evidence for this hypothesis was ob-

tained as novice and expert physics students solved physics

problems. Larkin noticed that experts generated solutions

to problems in bursts while novices appeared to generate

principles at random. Larkin reasoned that whenever experts

accessed a principle from memory, they immediately had









available all other principles related to the first prin-

ciple in the chunk. Thus when a principle was generated,

there was a high probability of several other principles

being generated. Novices, on the other hand, had not yet

developed a linking network which permitted the chunking of

related stimuli. Since principles were probably stored

individually, accessing one principle from memory did not

make it easier to access others.

In follow-up work, Larkin (1980) recorded verbal ac-

counts of experts and novices as they thought aloud during

the solutions of problems. The most obvious difference

between novices and experts was the greater amount of knowl-

edge that the experts possessed. This knowledge was organ-

ized into a network of relationships and served to direct

the experts in a short time span to the relevant parts of the

knowledge store. Again students who developed a knowledge

structure based on relationships between objects appeared to

process more information successfully.

These lines of research in expert-novice thought pro-

cesses are applicable to the question studied here. Students

retrieve factual information from the periodic table. This

information includes the element's chemical symbol, atomic

number, and atomic mass. Students must then construct a

network relating both these properties and the data derived

from each of the properties. Because most high school

students have minimal experience with the periodic table,









they can be considered novices. For these students, the

task of integrating large amounts of information from the

table places a burden on the students' processing strate-

gies.

At the same time, Gentner's (1980) work suggests a

procedure for reducing these processing requirements. The

periodic table can be considered an analogical model of the

written materials. Although the table is a condensed

version of the content contained in textual form, the rela-

tionships between content topics are identical in both text

and tabular form. The question then becomes whether or

not the structure of the traditional periodic table helps

students match the written content with the table and ulti-

mately facilitate processing of the table. If this

matching occurs, then processing the information from the

table becomes less complex. On the other hand, if students

do not perceive the match between textual materials and

the table, then they may be overwhelmed by the information

load. By modifying the traditional periodic table, educa-

tors may help students structure and process the informa-

tion from the table.

Although educational research studies investigating

student learning from the periodic table are lacking,

researchers have investigated learning from another

visual adjunct, namely, graphs. Research in this area seems

pertinent to the problem at hand because the periodic table









contains material in graphic form. At the same time,

graphs and the periodic table are both condensed versions

of material generally presented in many pages of text.

Also, both are visual adjuncts within instructional mate-

rials and both contain predominantly factual, numerical

data. Thus, research investigating subjects' ability to

use graphs may provide ideas concerning subjects' use of the

periodic table.


Learning from Graphs

In an early study investigating subjects' success in

using graphs, Vernon (1946) found that adults had consider-

able difficulty remembering and understanding numerical data

presented in graphic form. In addition, the less educated

subjects appeared perplexed by the graphic displays and

tended to ignore or transform the data to fit preconceived

ideas. Even the more educated subjects who successfully ab-

stracted factual information had difficulty forming a

general statement encompassing the information obtained from

a series of graphs.

In a follow-up study, Vernon (1950) compared the effec-

tiveness of a chart, a graph, and a table of figures. Al-

though subjects answered specific factual questions quite

well from all three displays, none of the displays were very

effective in facilitating higher levels of learning. The

failure of subjects to answer inferential questions sug-

gested that they had not acquired the level of understanding









necessary to produce generalizations or to relate facts

together. This inability to process information was again

found during the 1972-1973 National Assessment of Education

Progress results (Carpenter, Coburn, Reys, & Wilson, 1978).

When asked a factual question from a graph, 91% of 13-year-

olds answered it correctly. But when the question required

subjects to interpret a relationship only 45% of 13-year-

olds, 65% of 17-year-olds, and 63% of adults answered the

question correctly. It appears, then, that subjects use

graphs predominately for factual information.

There is no reason to believe that subjects would not

use the periodic table in the same way, as a visual organi-

zation of facts. Because there are few links between prop-

erties provided on the traditional table, its design places

the burden of information processing on the learner. By

including the relative size of the atoms, the number of outer

shell electrons, and the electron configuration directly on

the table, a more complete content structure would be pro-

vided. This added information could produce two effects.

If students perceive only additional information within each

block, then the display would become more complex. The

added information processing requirement could retard learn-

ing. If, on the other hand, the information is presented so

that students perceive the relationships in the content,

then the table would become a richer display and function to

help students process the information. Research findings









based on the use of other visual adjuncts may produce sug-

gestions on how to add more information to the table effec-

tively. Ideally, the resulting modifications would make the

table match more closely the written instructional materials.


Modifications to Visuals

Another line of research relevant to the present prob-

lem is pictorial research. This work also complements that

of Armbruster and Anderson (1980), Gentner (1980), and Larkin

(1979) in that its major thrust has focused on ways to help

learners process information from complex stimuli. A re-

curring theme here has been the amount of realism contained

in visuals. Carpenter (1953) expressed the opinion that

materials which were highly similar to the ideas, objects,

or events they referred to were more effective instructional

materials than visuals that had little similarity to

their referents. Travers (1967) expressed the opposite view-

point. Since subjects were perceived as being capable of

processing only some of the stimuli in a visual display,

learning was thought to be facilitated when presentations

were reduced in complexity. More recently, two areas of

pictorial realism have received much attention. First,

researchers have investigated the use of color versus black

and white in pictures. The second area of research has

focused on the amount of detail subjects viewed.

In a recent review, Chute (1979) reported that the

effectiveness of color cuing has produced inconclusive









results. Although learners generally preferred color ver-

sions to black-and-white versions, they did not necessarily

learn significantly better from color versions (Winn &

Schieman, 1977). Other researchers found that color en-

hanced learning when it was used to emphasize relevant

characteristics and aided in organizing stimuli for appro-

priate discrimination to be made (Berry, 1977; Norman &

Rieber, 1968).

Thus it appeared that the function color served in the

visual was important since the mere inclusion of color did

not enhance learning from the visual materials. It seemed

that color's importance rested primarily on the degree to

which it facilitated for the learner the organizing and

structuring of the presented stimuli. Color can be ex-

pected to increase learning from visuals if it is used to

highlight relationships between objects and to facilitate

quick visual discrimination.

Similar research results were found when researchers

varied the amount of detail presented in pictures. The most

common result was no differences in learning from visuals

with little or much detail. Wicker (1970) found no differ-

ences between photographs and line diagrams when used as

stimulus materials in a paired-associate learning task.

Wheelbarger (1970) found that the addition of shading to line

diagrams did not enhance learning compared to the line

diagrams themselves. Finally, Dwyer (1976) indicated that









the addition of realistic detail in visualizations did not

automatically improve instruction. Dwyer added that the more

complex visuals may have produced an information overload

for low ability students.

Not all research, however, has produced no significant

effects for the addition of detail. Travers (1969) found

that the addition of shading to outline diagrams increased

the recognizability of the presented pictures. Dwyer (1972)

also found that visuals high in realism tended to be more

effective when students could control the amount of exposure

time to the visuals.

As with color, shading and detail appeared to facilitate

learning in situations where the added detail served a pur-

pose. The mere addition of detail did not automatically

enhance learning. Only in instances where the added detail

readily provided subjects with relevant information did the

detail enhance learning from the visuals. The potential use

of these widely used variations in visual materials, namely,

color and amount of detail, can easily be incorporated into

the traditional periodic table. The addition of color and

detail can provide a table illustrating relationships be-

tween chemistry topics. In this manner an economically

efficient way to influence the processing and acquisition of

related chemistry material can be achieved. However, by

adding more detail to the display, lower ability students

may be placed at a disadvantage. Because Zeaman and House









(1963) found that such students have weak attentional and

discrimination abilities, the more complex displays may

be too burdensome to process. Thus another question to

consider is which types of variations in the periodic table

are most effective for different content areas and for

different types of students.


Aptitude Treatment Interactions

Educational researchers have traditionally sought the

"one best" method of instruction to use with an entire

class of students. This procedure has been followed although

students were known to differ in physical traits, emotional

traits, personality, and mental abilities. Recently the

search for the "one best" method of instruction has been

challenged by a search for alternative ways in which instruc-

tion can be presented to more closely fit the characteristics

of learners (Cronbach & Snow, 1977; Koran & Koran, 1980).

Instead of only varying the time students were exposed to

identical methods or varying the educational goals, Cronbach

(1965) proposed that subjects receive different instruc-

tional methods to reach the same educational goals. Accord-

ingly, he proposed a line of research to explore how differ-

ent student characteristics might be matched to different

instructional treatments. Experimental studies expanding

on this idea were called aptitude treatment interaction

studies, or ATI. The basic premise behind aptitude treatment

interaction studies is that no one educational environment









is best for all individuals, but that different individuals

prosper in different environments related to learner charac-

teristics (Koran, 1973).

Cronbach and Snow (1977) defined aptitude as any charac-

teristic of the learner that functioned selectively with

respect to learning. Thus, any characteristic that facili-

tated or hindered learning from some designated instruc-

tional method was considered an aptitude. A treatment was

defined as anything done to a learner in an instructional

setting which included variation in structure, pacing, style,

or modality. Generally speaking, an interaction is present

when one treatment is significantly better for one type of

student, while an alternative treatment is more beneficial

for a different type of student. In order for an aptitude

treatment interaction to exist, alternative treatments must

be designed to meet identical educational objectives. In

addition, one or more aptitude measures must be obtained for

each subject. Because the general objective of aptitude

treatment interaction research is to match instructional

methods to learner characteristics, it is necessary to

determine under what conditions a particular instructional

method would be most effective for particular types or

students. Knowledge of such relationships would ultimately

provide educators with the basis for individualizing instruc-

tion by aptitudes.









Since Cronbach first introduced the concept of ATI,

many ATI studies reporting inconclusive results have

appeared in the literature. In an attempt to analyze and

critique previous research as well as to provide guidelines

for future research, Cronbach and Snow (1977) extensively

reviewed the ATI literature. They found that general

ability interacted more often than other, more specific

abilities. In general, methods that used discovery learn-

ing, relied heavily on verbiage, were rapidly paced, or re-

quired learners to process information largely on their own

benefited high ability students while hindering low ability

students.

For example, one set of studies contrasted orderly,

linear programs with the same frames exposed in scrambled

order. The scrambled versions which required students to

organize the material for themselves and to select and

utilize strategies for doing so generally benefited the

more able students while hindering lower ability students

(Brown, 1970; Buckland, 1968; Maier & Jacobs, 1966).

Investigators found similar results when subjects at-

tempted to learn relationships in math. Anderson (1941),

Orton, McKay, and Rainey (1964), and Thiele (1938) found that

treatments that attempted to explain mathematical relation-

ships by leading students to organize the material for

themselves benefited students with superior mental ability.

Similar findings occurred with grammar as the content.









Fredrick, Blount, and Johnson (1968) divided eighth-grade

students into four groups. The first group received written

statements explaining concepts in structural grammar. The

same concepts were presented in symbolic codes and abbrevia-

tions to the second group. For the third group these abbre-

viations were placed into sentence-tree diagrams which pro-

duced "figural" representations of the relationships be-

tween the concepts. The final group served as a control.

All three treatment groups were superior to the control, and

the symbolic and "figural" groups were superior to the verbal

group. In addition, the figural treatment appeared to benefit

high ability students but was not very useful to low ability

students. The authors reasoned that low ability subjects

were not capable of interpreting the tree diagrams on their

own.

Finally, Allen (1975) reported that learners having a

high general ability were usually more capable of processing

greater amounts of sensory data than low ability students

when confronted with media presentations. All of these ATI

studies produced interactions when general ability was con-

sidered as the aptitude. In fact, Cronbach and Snow (1977)

suggested a measure of general ability be included in all ATI

studies. Besides general ability, they suggested that prior

achievement, memory, achievement orientation, and anxiety

were the most promising variables in studying ATI. After an

analysis of the task, two of these, prior achievement and









memory, appear extremely relevant to learning from the

periodic table.

Investigating the effects of prior achievement, Salomon

(1974) found that students low in relevant visualization

skills profited most when shown the skills to be acquired.

Students with high relevant abilities performed best when

they were permitted to use their own effective skills.

Abramson and Kagen (1975) prefamiliarized half of their

subjects with a technical heart disease program. All sub-

jects were then randomly assigned to either a reading only

treatment or a treatment requiring constructed responses

with feedback. Those subjects who received familiarization

performed better under the reading only condition, while the

constructed answer treatment benefited subjects not pre-

familiarized with the content.

Tobias (1976) reviewed achievement treatment interac-

tions and concluded that the higher the level of prior achiev-

ment, the less instructional support was needed to achieve

the instructional objectives. Minimal instructional sup-

port places the burden of processing stimuli on the learner.

Increasing instructional support would focus on ways to

organize the stimuli to facilitate student processing.

Tobias and Ingber (1976) provided added support for Tobias'

instructional support hypothesis. They found that students

with a Catholic background benefited more from a constructed

responding and feedback treatment than from just reading









about Jewish rituals. There was much less difference between

the two treatments for Jewish students. Taken as a whole,

it appears that the higher the prior achievement in an

area, the more strategies a learner possesses to help pro-

cess new information and the less outside help is required.

Memory abilities also appear important when considering

learning from the periodic table. Memory factors appear to

split off from general ability to form a separate ability.

Jensen (1969) illustrated this distinction by identifying

what he called Level I and Level II abilities. Level I

abilities are involved in the formation of associations.

Learners perform minimal transformations with the presented

stimuli, so the response corresponds highly with the input.

Examples include rote memory tasks. Conversely, students

who use Level II abilities, actively elaborate and trans-

form the stimulus. These abilities appear more dependent

upon what learners already know and processes they can use

when presented with a task. Examples are concept learning

and problem solving. It appears that students must use

both types of these abilities to successfully process the

periodic table. Hence, both prior science knowledge and

memory abilities seem important when considering the

periodic table. Students generally use the traditional

periodic table to obtain data given on the table. They

must distinguish which piece of data within each block corre-

sponds to the property of interest. The table is also used









to derive information for each element from the given data.

Here students must possess a thorough knowledge of science to

construct a network of relationships between given data and

information derived from that data. Finally, students often

compare properties of different elements and develop rela-

tionships between groups of elements.

Modifications to the table could alter how students

process the information. For instance, adding numerical

information within each block may require students to dis-

criminate between more stimuli. At the same time, this

added information may reduce the amount of mental elabora-

tion needed to form a network of relationships.

Because many of the properties of elements depend upon

atomic structure, an alternative table could include visual

representations of atoms. These representations would

closely correspond to representations in textual materials.

In this way, students should be able to distinguish more

easily between the properties of elements. The construction

of a network of relationships should also be facilitated.

Regardless of the table used, the location of the table

within instructional materials may be important. Typically,

textbook publishers place the table at the back of the book.

When using the text, students must hold information in

memory, turn to the back of the book, recall what to do,

perform the task, hold other information in memory, and then

turn back to the text. By providing a table adjacent to









the written materials, it appears that publishers could

reduce the memory burden associated with using the periodic

table.

This process analysis suggests that a measure of

general ability, a science knowledge measure, and an associa-

tive memory measure may be worthy of investigation. Finally,

students use the periodic table to solve problems. The

strategies subjects possess and use to solve problems might

interact with the type of table used. Thus a measure of

fluid ability would seem appropriate.


Summary

The following were the major points derived from the

literature reviewed in this chapter and leading to the hypothe-

ses to be tested:

1. An increasing emphasis has been placed on cognitive

interpretations of learning during instruction

(Wittrock, 1979).

2. Students actively process information from stimuli.

3. Analogies have been used by cognitive psychologists

to interpret how students process information

(Gentner, 1980).

4. In order to process information presented on the

table effectively, students must construct a net-

work of relationships between data given on the

table and information derived from it (Larkin, 1979).









5. The structure of the traditional periodic table

places most of the information processing bur-

den of using the table along with verbal instruc-

tion on the learner.

6. Subjects have not been found to process effectively

visual stimuli such as graphs (Vernon, 1950).

7. Reseachers have found that color and amount of

realism can be used to make learning from visuals

more effective (Chute, 1979; Dwyer, 1972).

8. Color and added information on periodic tables

should function to help students structure and

process information more efficiently.

9. The location of the table within instructional mate-

rials may be an important factor.

10. Learner characteristics may interact with the type

of table presented (Cronbach & Snow, 1977).

Taken as a group, these points suggest the efficacy of

exploring (1) the effects of structural modifications to

the periodic table, (2) the inclusion of schema which provide

an analogical model for learners, and (3) the exploration

of aptitudes which might make the above differentially

effective for learners.


Hypotheses

Based upon previously cited research, the following

hypotheses were formulated: (All hypotheses were tested

at a=.05.)









1. Subjects receiving periodic tables modified by the

addition of numerical or visual information will

perform significantly better on the criterion mea-

sure than subjects receiving the traditional

periodic table.

2. Subjects receiving periodic tables not attached to

the written materials will perform significantly

better on the criterion measure than subjects re-

ceiving periodic tables attached to the instruc-

tional materials.

3. Subjects receiving a two-page schema containing a

network of relationships designed to help students

process the chemistry topics explained in the

written materials will perform significantly better

on the criterion measure than subjects not receiv-

ing a schema.

4. There will be a differential relationship between

criterion performance and aptitudes of subjects as

measured by the vocabulary, associative memory,

science knowledge, and fluid ability measures.













CHAPTER III
EXPERIMENTAL PROCEDURES


Subjects

Tenth-, eleventh-, and twelfth-grade students enrolled

in a first-semester, high school chemistry course partici-

pated in the study. All subjects attended one of two high

schools (N, 0) located in the same north central Florida

community. Subjects at school N had not been previously

taught the periodic table, so the content in the study was

relatively new to them. Subjects at school O, on the other

hand, had just completed a unit on the periodic table, so the

content was old to them. A distribution of the experimen-

tal subjects by school and grade level appears in Table 1.

One hundred and fifty-eight subjects from seven chemistry

classes read the instructional materials, completed the post-

test, and completed all four aptitude measures. An addi-

tional two subjects completed all of the material except two

of the aptitude measures. Data from these 160 subjects were

used in all subsequent analyses. Absence from school or

reading difficulties prevented an additional eight subjects

from completing the experiment.


General Procedures

Subjects participated in the experiment during regu-

larly scheduled 50-minute chemistry classes on three









Table 1
Distribution of Subjects by School and Grade Level



Grade level

School 10 11 12


Content new (N) 10 65 23


Content old (0) 29 25 8


Total sample 39 90 31









successive days. The same procedures were followed at both

schools during successive weeks. Subjects within each

class were randomly assigned to one of the eight experimen-

tal treatments.

On the first day subjects received the instructional

materials. In addition to written directions, the experimen-

ter briefly gave oral directions to each class. Students

were instructed to read carefully the instructional mate-

rials, to study the periodic table, and to answer any ques-

tions contained in the materials. Students proceeded at

their own pace and recorded the time they spent using the

instructional materials.

On the second day all subjects received a posttest as

well as the same periodic table they used the previous day.

The experimenter instructed the students to use the periodic

table to help them answer the posttest questions. Data from

two of the four aptitude measures were also collected. The

remaining aptitude data were collected on the third and final

day.


The Design

A modified posttest only design was used to test the

hypotheses (Table 2). All eight experimental groups received

a set of instructional materials and a delayed -(24-hour)

posttest. The use of such a design permitted the evaluation

of the relative effects each independent variable (type of

periodic table, location of table, and presence or absence









Table 2
Experimental Design


Location
Instructional
materials Attached (A) Not attached (NA)


Traditional table
plus schema (TS) TS-A TS-NA

Table with added
numerical data
plus schema (NUS) NUS-A NUS-NA

Table with added
visual data
plus schema (VS) VS-A VS-NA

Table with added
visual data (V) V-A V-NA









of a schema) had upon the dependent variable (criterion

measure). In addition to main effects, the design permitted

investigation of aptitude x treatment interactions.


Treatments

The following is a summary of materials received by

subjects in all eight treatment conditions. The materials

are explained in more detail following the description of

the last treatment.

1. Subjects in treatment one (TS-A) received written

instructional materials corresponding to the tradi-

tional periodic table. Following the materials was

a two-page schema which provided a network of

relationships between the topics explained in the

written materials. Finally, the traditional peri-

odic table was attached to the end of the packet.

2. Subjects in treatment two (TS-NA) received mate-

rials identical to those received by subjects in

treatment one. However, the periodic table was de-

tached from the end of the packet and placed beside

the written instructional materials.

3. Subjects in treatment three (NUS-A) received

written instructional materials corresponding to

the periodic table modified with added numerical

information. Following the materials was a two-

page schema which provided a network of relation-

ships between the topics explained in the written









materials. Finally, the modified table containing

added numerical information was attached to the

end of the packet.

4. Subjects in treatment four (NUS-NA) received mate-

rials identical to those received by subjects in

treatment three. However, the periodic table was

detached from the end of the packet and placed be-

side the written instructional materials.

5. Subjects in treatment five (VS-A) received written

instructional materials corresponding to the modi-

fied periodic table with added visual information.

Following the materials was a two-page schema which

provided a network of relationships between the

topics explained in the written materials. Finally,

the modified table containing added visual informa-

tion was attached to the end of the packet.

6. Subjects in treatment six (VS-NA) received materials

identical to those received by subjects in treatment

five. However, the periodic table was detached

from the end of the packet and placed beside the

written instructional materials.

7. Subjects in treatment seven (V-A) received written

instructional materials corresponding to the modi-

fied periodic table containing added visual informa-

tion. The modified table was then attached to the

end of the packet. No schema was provided.









8. Subjects in treatment eight (V-NA) received mate-

rials identical to those received by subjects in

treatment seven. However, the periodic table was

detached from the end of the packet and placed

beside the written instructional materials.

Each of the treatments was comparable to its counter-

parts in terms of content of written materials and the nature

of the schema. The periodic tables were varied in terms of

amount, kind, and mode of information presented. The loca-

tion of the tables also varied; they were either detached

for use concurrently or connected to the end of materials as

in textbook formats.


Instructional Materials

Subjects in each experimental group received a packet

of written instructional materials and one of three periodic

tables. In addition, six of the experimental groups re-

ceived a two-page schema. The schema provided a network of

relationships existing between the different chemistry con-

tents discussed in the written materials. Five high school

chemistry teachers from four high schools examined all the

materials and found them appropriate for high school chemis-

try students.


Written Materials

Seven to eight pages of written materials explained the

following chemistry topics: chemistry and the atom,









electron configurations, formulas of compounds, metals, non-

metals, and trends in the properties of elements. Students

learned how to use the periodic table that accompanied the

written materials to answer questions pertaining to each

topic covered in the written materials.

The initial written materials were field tested in a

local high school chemistry class and a local high school

biology class. Information from the field test was used to

revise those areas of the material that posed problems for

the students.

After revision of materials, six high school chemistry

students and three high school biology students participated

in a pilot test of the materials. These students met indi-

vidually with the experimenter and read through the materials.

The students were directed to note areas of the text that

were unclear to them. Students were timed in order to ob-

tain an estimate of the length of time that would be re-

quired to complete the study in the schools. In addition,

the researcher noted the frequency and amount of time stu-

dents spent referring to the periodic table. Finally, repre-

sentative posttest items were given to the subjects and

their procedures for answering the items were recorded. From

these observations chemistry students were selected as the

more appropriate sample because the biology students

experienced considerable difficulty with the materials.









A final revision of the materials was conducted. The

main modification to the materials was the insertion of 10

questions. The purpose of the questions was to force the

students to search the periodic table for answers and to

record these answers. These questions were included since

the pilot test revealed that students spent very little time

referring to the table. Students responded that the peri-

odic table was familiar to them, so they did not perceive a

need to study the periodic table accompanying the written

materials.

Written materials accompanying the three different

periodic tables were essentially identical. Differences

occurred only in the addition of a few lines describing the

numbers or visual information presented on the modified

periodic tables. A Fry (1968) readability estimate on the

written materials indicated an approximate reading level of

eleventh grade. Examples of the written materials appear in

Appendix A.


Periodic Tables

All subjects.received one of three periodic tables in

addition to the written materials. The first table was a

traditional table that contained only the atomic number, the

atomic mass, and the chemical symbol of each element. Such

a table provided the students with a minimum amount of in-

formation and required the students to construct their own

network of relationships.









The second table was a modification of the traditional

table. Additional numerical information describing elec-

tron configuration, the relative size of the atom, and the

number of outer shell electrons was provided within each

block. This added information produced a potentially richer

display for the student to utilize.

The third and final table displayed the same information

within each block as the second table. However, the outer

electron shell was visually represented with a semicircle and

corresponded to the relative size of the atom. The number of

outer shell electrons was placed at this shell to stress the

importance of atomic structure in determining an element's

properties. Finally, each group of elements having similar

electron configurations was outlined on the table in a dif-

ferent color. Those elements with their outer subshell com-

pletely filled were indicated by shading the semicircle

within each block. Examples of the three periodic tables

appear in Appendix B.


Schema

The content contained on the periodic table is gener-

ally accompanied by much written explanation in chemistry

textbooks. Because the explanations of these topics are

physically separated by many pages, students may have diffi-

culty perceiving and constructing relationships between the

topics. Six of the eight treatments therefore received a

two-page schema. The first page of the schema provided a









network of relationships between data derived from an ele-

ment's atomic number. This information included an ele-

ment's electron configuration, reactivity, and formulas of

compounds.

The second page of the schema identified relationships

between groups of elements. Size and reactivity trends were

depicted for rows and families of metals and nonmetals. It

was anticipated that the schema would help students link and

process related principles.

Again pilot test data revealed that subjects spent less

than two minutes studying the schema. Consequently, six

questions were attached to the schema. These questions were

designed to force students to attend to the relationships

presented on the schema. The schema and attached questions

appear in Appendix C.


Measures

Posttest

All subjects received a 28-item posttest on the day

following the reading of the instructional materials. Stu-

dents used the periodic table they had in the instructional

materials to help them answer the posttest items. One

portion of the posttest was 14 forced choice, or multiple

choice,items. These items consisted of a statement or ques-

tion followed by four alternative answers. The students were

to select and record the most appropriate answer on their

answer sheets. The remaining 14 items were equivalent in









content to the forced choice items; however, these construc-

ted answer items consisted of only a statement or a question.

Students were expected to use the periodic table to obtain a

solution for these items. Reliabilities as calculated by

Kuder-Richardson's 21 formula were .51 for the forced choice

items, .52 for the constructed answer items, and .72 for the

total posttest. The posttest appears in Appendix D.


Aptitudes

Subjects were given four aptitude measures based on an

analysis of the instructional task. Three of the measures

were taken from the Kit of Reference Tests for Cognitive

Factors (French, Ekstrom, and Price, 1963). The tests

selected were Vocabulary V-2, First and Last Names Ma-3,

and Hidden Figures Cf-l. These tests were designed to mea-

sure a student's ability to understand the English language,

to remember bits of unrelated material, and to keep one or

more definite configurations in mind despite perceptual dis-

tractions. A fourth test was developed to measure students'

prerequisite factual and conceptual knowledge in science

(general science, biology, and chemistry).

All aptitude measures were timed. Students' scores were

determined by the correct number of answers. A summary of

the aptitude measures and their reliabilities as calculated

by Kuder-Richardson's 21 formula are presented in Table 3.









Table 3
Time and Reliabilities of Aptitude Measures


Aptitude Time Reliability


Vocabulary Each part-4 minutes .59


First and last names Each part-5 minutes .79


Hidden figures 10 minutes .49


Science knowledge 5 minutes .28














CHAPTER IV
RESULTS


The primary purposes of this study were

1. To investigate the differences in learner achieve-

ment when instructional materials varied in (1) the

type of periodic table subjects used, (2) the loca-

tion of the table, and (3) the presence or absence

of a schema designed to help students process

information and relationships on the table.

2. To investigate the interaction of each of the four

aptitudes with the type of periodic table and the

location of the table within the instructional

materials.

The statistical tests of the hypotheses and the results

of the tests will be reported here with the results of the

analyses of the instructional treatment main effects followed

by the analyses of aptitude x table and aptitude x location

interactions. Initial analyses were conducted combining sub-

jects from the two schools. Results revealed no significant

main effects and no aptitude x treatment interactions.

Subsequently, separate analyses were performed on the data

obtained from each school. This procedure seemed warranted

because subjects at school O (content old) received instruc-

tion on the periodic table just prior to the experimental









study, while subjects at school N (content new) received no

previous instruction. All analyses were computed using the

University of Florida Statistical Programs Library and the

SAS Language Library.


Variables-School N

Instructional materials consisted of seven to eight

pages of written materials accompanying a periodic table.

Six of the eight experimental groups also received a two-

page schema. Data were collected for each group on the

number of text questions answered correctly, the number of

schema questions answered correctly, and the time spent

reading the instructional materials. Cell frequencies,

means, and standard deviations for these variables are re-

ported in Table 4.

Scores were also recorded for each subject on the post-

test composed of. 28 items. This score was subsequently

divided into a score for the 14 forced choice items and a

score for the 14 constructed answer items. In addition, the

length of time students used to complete the posttest was

recorded. Descriptive statistics for these variables are

reported in Table 5.

Finally, data were collected for each subject on mea-

sures of vocabulary, science knowledge, associative memory,

and hidden figures. Cell frequencies, means, and standard

deviations are reported in Table 6.










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Instructional Treatment Main Effects

The following research hypotheses were of major concern

relative to instructional treatment main effects.

1. Subjects receiving periodic tables modified by the

addition of numerical or visual information will

perform significantly better on the criterion mea-

sure than subjects receiving the traditional peri-

odic table.

2. Subjects receiving periodic tables not attached to

the written materials will perform significantly

better on the criterion measure than subjects

receiving periodic tables attached to the instruc-

tional materials.

3. Subjects receiving a two-page schema containing a

network of relationships designed to help students

process the chemistry topics contained in the

written materials will perform significantly better

on the criterion measure than subjects not receiv-

ing a schema.

In order to investigate main effects for type of table,

location of periodic table, and the presence of a schema, a

regression equation was used containing both table and loca-

tion as components of the regression model. Dependent

measures included the forced choice items, the constructed

answer items, and total posttest. A summary of F values is

presented in Table 7.









Table 7
Summary Table of Dependent Variable Main Effects for School N



Source df SS MS F


Table

Location

Residual

Total




Table

Location

Residual

Total




Table

Location

Residual

Total


Forced choice items

3 46.94

1 7.72

93 534.84

97 586.82


Constructed answer items

3 41.08

1 2.04

93 637.88

97 682.69


Total posttest

3 159.79


1.83

1880.60

2040.49


*p<.05.


15.65

7.72

5.75






13.69

2.04

6.86






53.26

1.83

20.22


2.72*

1.34








2.00

.30








2.63

.09


2









A significant table effect, F (3,93) = 2.72, was found

for the forced choice items. With an error rate per family

set at .05, Bonferroni t tests failed to detect the nature

of the differences. However, by observing group means and

inspecting the confidence intervals produced by the pair-

wise comparisons, it appeared that differences existed be-

tween subjects receiving the traditional table and subjects

who received the visually modified table. The latter sub-

jects performed better than subjects who viewed the tradi-

tional table. No differences existed between subjects who

viewed the visual table with schema and those who viewed the

visual table without schema.

Although the trend was the same as the trend with forced

choice items, no significant table effect was detected when

constructed answer items were the dependent measure, F (3,93)

= 2.00; p = .12. A marginally significant table effect was

found for the total posttest, F (3,93)= 2.63. Again

Bonferroni follow-up analyses failed to detect the nature of

the differences. However, from the confidence intervals

produced, it appeared that subjects who received either the

traditional periodic table or the table with added numerical

information performed poorer than subjects who received the

visual table with or without the schema.

There were no significant main effects for location of

table detected with any of the dependent measures.









Text Questions, Reading Time, and Test Time

Analyses of variance were also performed using inserted

text questions, reading time with the instructional mate-

rials, and posttest time as the dependent variables. Sum-

mary statistics for all three analyses appear in Table 8.


Text Questions

Subjects in all eight treatment groups received the same

10 questions within their instructional materials. The pur-

pose of these questions was to assure that subjects used all

the instructional materials provided. Subjects were required

to use the accompanying periodic table to answer the inserted

questions. An analysis of variance indicated no significant

table x location interaction, F (3,90) = .87; no significant

location effect, F (1,90) = .15; and no significant table

effect, F (3,90) = 1.15. Hence it appeared that all sub-

jects could answer the inserted questions regardless of the

type of table present with the instructional materials.


Reading Time

It was anticipated that subjects not receiving the two-

page schema would spend less time with the instructional

materials. An analysis of variance on reading time re-

vealed a nonsignificant table x location interaction, F

(3,90) = .71; a nonsignificant location effect, F (1,90) =

.92; and a significant table effect, F (3,90) = 2.78, p =

.045. Follow-up analyses using Bonferroni t tests indicated










Table 8
Summary Table for Analysis of Variance


for School N


Source df SS MS F


Table

Location

Table x location

Residual

Total




Table

Location

Table x location

Residual

Total




Table

Location

Table x location

Residual

Total


Text questions

7.60

.24

4.31

148.88

161.63

Reading time

344.18

38.07

88.60

3719.16

4194.00


Test time

132.34

47.15

53.23

1275.95

1507.85


*p<.05.


2.53

.24

1.44

1.65


1.53

.15

.87


114.73

38.07

29.53

41.32


2.78*

.92

.71


44.11

47.15

17.74

14.18


3.11*

3.33

1.25









that subjects who viewed the traditional table spent a sig-

nificantly longer time with the materials than subjects who

received the visual table without the schema. No other

pairwise differences were detected.


Test Time

Analysis of variance on test time indicated no signifi-

cant table x location interaction, F (3,90) = 1.25; no sig-

nificant main effect for location, F (1,90) = 3.33, p = .07;

but a significant table effect, F (3,90) = 3.11. Bonferroni

pairwise comparisons indicated that subjects in the visual

table no schema groups used a significantly longer time on

the posttest than subjects in the visual table, schema

groups. Subjects in the other groups who received the schema

also used less time than the no schema groups, but the dif-

ferences were not statistically significant.


Aptitude x Treatment Interactions

The following hypothesis was of major concern relative

to aptitude x treatment interactions:

There will be a differential relationship between cri-

terion performance and aptitude of subjects as measured by

the vocabulary, associative memory, science knowledge, and

fluid ability measures.


Aptitude x Table x Location

Since both type of table and location of table were

varied in the study, possible three-way interactions between









treatment conditions and student aptitudes were investigated.

A regression solution for a two-way analysis of covariance

was used to detect possible interactions. The possibility

of interactions was evaluated by comparing the regression

slopes for each treatment condition. An aptitude x treat-

ment interaction existed if the regression lines were sig-

nificantly nonparallel. Analyses were conducted using the

forced choice items, the constructed answer items, and the

total posttest.

Possible three-way interactions were investigated using

the 14 forced choice items on the posttest as the dependent

variable. No significant interactions were found for science

knowledge, F (3,82) = .73; associative memory, F (3,82) =

.69; or hidden figures, F (3,82) = .65. A marginally signifi-

cant interaction was detected for vocabulary, F (3,82) =

2.56, p = .06. The summary statistics for this vocabulary

x table x location interaction appear in Table 9.

Possible three-way interactions were also investigated

using the 14 constructed answer items on the posttest as the

dependent variable. No significant interactions were found

for science knowledge, F (3,82) =.47; associative memory,

F (3,82) = 1.28; or hidden figures, F (3,82) = 1.18. A

three-way interaction was detected for vocabulary, F (3,82)=

4.10. The summary statistics for the vocabulary x table x

location interaction appear in Table 9.

Finally, three-way interactions were investigated using

the total posttest as the dependent variable. As with the









Table 9
F Table for Testing Aptitude x Table x Location Interactions


Source df SS MS F



Forced choice items

Vocabulary x table
x location 3 42.50 14.17 2.56

Residual 82 454.52 5.54

Total 97 586.82

Constructed answer items

Vocabulary x table
x location 3 75.54 25.18 4.10*

Residual 82 503.27 6.14

Total 97 682.69


Total posttest

Vocabulary x table
x location 3 206.06 68.67 3.64*

Residual 82 1545.70 18.85

Total 97 2040.49


*p<.05.









previous two sets of analyses, no significant interactions

were found for science knowledge, F (3,82) = .06; associa-

tive memory, F (3,82) = 1.11; or hidden figures, F (3,82) =

1.01. However, a three-way interaction was detected for

vocabulary, F (3,82) = 3.64. The summary statistics for

this interaction appear in Table 9.

The existence of three-way interactions for vocabulary

suggested further analyses. Two-way interactions for vocabu-

lary x table holding location constant and vocabulary x

location holding table constant were examined.


Location Constant

When the periodic table was attached to the back of the

instructional materials, no vocabulary x table interactions

were found for forced choice items, F (3,44) = 2.15; con-

structed answer items, F (3,44) = 2.14; or total posttest,

F (3,44) = 2.40. Analysis for interactions when the peri-

odic table was not attached to the instructional materials

revealed no significant vocabulary x table interactions for

forced choice items, F (3,38) = .86; for constructed answer

items, F (3,38) = 2.24; or for the total posttest, F (3,38)

= 1.42.


Table Constant

Additional analyses were performed to determine if inter-

actions existed between the two locations that the table

appeared in. For the traditional periodic table, no signifi-

cant vocabulary x location interactions were detected for









forced choice items, F (1,20) = 2.65; for constructed

answer items, F (1,20) = .25; or for the total posttest,

F (1,20) = 1.48.

For the periodic table modified by the addition of

numerical information, the vocabulary x location interaction

for forced choice items approached significance, F (1,22) =

3.81. In addition, significant interactions were detected

for constructed answer items, F (1,22) = 5.63, and for the

total posttest, F (1,22) = 5.64. In all cases, the table

not attached to the instructional materials produced a re-

gression line with negative slope, while the attached table

produced a line with positive slope. The interactions for

constructed answer items and total posttest are represented

in Figures 1 and 2 respectively. Slopes and intercepts for

the three dependent measures are summarized in Table 10.

The opposite trend in regression slopes was detected

for the table with added visual information. Although no

significant vocabulary x location interaction was detected

for forced choice items, F (1,18) = .71, a significant

interaction was found for constructed answer items, F (1,18)

= 5.84. The attached table location produced a regression

line with negative slope while the nonattached table produced

a positive slope (Figure 3). Finally, the interaction for

the total posttest approached significance, F (1,18) = 3.28.

Slopes and intercepts for each of the dependent variables

are summarized in Table 10.


























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Two-Way Interactions with Other Aptitudes

Since no three-way interactions of aptitude x table x

location were found for science knowledge, associative

memory, or hidden figures, analyses were performed investi-

gating possible two-way interactions. Aptitude x table and

aptitude x location interactions were examined using forced

choice items, constructed answer items, and total posttest

as the dependent measures. The following 18 combinations of

independent and dependent variables were used to investigate

aptitude x treatment interactions:

1. Science knowledge x table for forced choice items

2. Science knowledge x table for constructed answer

items

3. Science knowledge x table for total posttest

4. Associative memory x table for forced choice items

5. Associative memory x table for constructed answer

items

6. Associative memory x table for total posttest

7. Hidden figures x table for forced choice items

8. Hidden figures x table for constructed answer

items

9. Hidden figures x table for total posttest

10. Science knowledge x location for forced choice items

11. Science knowledge x location for constructed answer

items

12. Science knowledge x location for total posttest









13. Associative memory x location for forced choice

items

14. Associative memory x location for constructed

answer items

15. Associative memory x location for total posttest

16. Hidden figures x location for forced choice items

17. Hidden figures x location for constructed answer

items

18. Hidden figures x location for total posttest

In none of the above cases was a significant interac-

tion detected. The F values for aptitude x table and apti-

tude x location interactions appear in Tables 11 and 12

respectively.


Variables-School 0

Instructional materials consisted of seven to eight

pages of written materials accompanying a periodic table.

Six of the eight groups also received a two-page schema.

Data were collected for each group on the number of text

questions answered correctly, the number of schema questions

answered correctly, and the time spent reading the instruc-

tional materials. Cell frequencies, means, and standard

deviations for these variables are reported in Table 13.

Scores were also recorded for each subject on the post-

test comprised of 28 items. This score was subsequently sub-

divided into a score for the forced choice items and a score

for the constructed answer items. In addition, the length of









Table 11
F Values for Aptitude x Table Interactions Between
Aptitudes and Criteria Measures for School N


Interaction df F



Forced choice items

Science knowledge x table 3,85 .25

Associative memory x table 3,85 .32

Hidden figures x table 3,85 .86


Constructed answer items

Science knowledge x table 3,85 .19

Associative memory x table 3,85 1.71

Hidden figures x table 3,85 .48


Total posttest

Science knowledge x table 3,85 .03

Associative memory x table 3,85 .64

Hidden figures x table 3,85 .37









Table 12
F Values for Aptitude x Location Interactions
Between Aptitudes and Criteria Measures for School N


Interaction df F


Forced choice items

Science knowledge x location 1,85 .26

Associative memory x location 1,85 .38

Hidden figures x location 1,85 .27


Constructed answer items

Science knowledge x location 1,85 .25

Associative memory x location 1,85 .16

Hidden figures x location 1,85 .00


Total posttest

Science knowledge x location 1,85 .32

Associative memory x location 1,85 .30

Hidden figures x location 1,85 .07












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Descriptive statistics for these variables are reported in

Table 14.

Finally, data for each subject were collected on mea-

sures of vocabulary, science knowledge, associative memory,

and hidden figures. Cell frequencies, means, and standard

deviations are reported in Table 15.


Instructional Treatment Main Effects

The following research hypotheses were of major concern

relative to instructional treatment main effects:

1. Subjects receiving periodic tables modified by the

addition of numerical or visual information will

perform significantly better on the criterion mea-

sure than subjects receiving the traditional peri-

odic table.

2. Subjects receiving periodic tables not attached to

the written materials will perform significantly

better on the criterion measure than subjects re-

ceiving periodic tables attached to the instruc-

tional materials.

3. Subjects receiving a two-page schema containing a

network of relationships designed to help students

process the chemistry topics contained in the

written materials will perform significantly better

on the criterion measure than subjects not receiv-

ing a schema.












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In order to investigate main effects for type of peri-

odic table, location of table, and the presence of a schema,

a regression equation was used containing both table and

location as components of the regression model. A summary

of F values for all three dependent measures is provided in

Table 16.

No significant differences were found for type of peri-

odic table, location of table, or the presence of a schema

for any of the dependent measures. Thus the hypotheses were

not supported by the data.


Text Questions, Reading Time, and Test Time

Analyses of variance were also performed using inserted

text questions, reading time with the instructional mate-

rials, and posttest time as the dependent variables. Sum-

mary statistics for all three analyses appear in Table 17.


Text Questions

Subjects in all eight experimental groups received 10

questions within their instructional materials. The purpose

of these questions was to assure that subjects used all the

instructional materials provided. Subjects were required

to use the accompanying periodic table to answer the in-

serted questions. Results from the analysis of variance in-

dicated no significant table x location interaction, F (3,54)

= 1.61; no significant location effect, F (3,54) = .70; and no

significant table effect, F (3,54) = .80. Thus it appeared









Table 16
Summary Table of Dependent Variable
for School 0


Main Effects


Source df SS MS F


Table

Location

Residual

Total




Table

Location

Residual

Total




Table

Location

Residual

Total


Forced choice items

3 8.36

1 4.15

57 304.38

61 317.35

Constructed answer items

3 8.61

1 17.45

57 338.13

61 364.77


Total posttest

31.18

40.39

1124.04

1197.69


2.79

4.15

5.34






2.87

17.45

5.93






10.39

40.39

19.72


.48

2.94


.53

2.05










Summary Table for


Table 17
Analysis of Variance for School O


Source df SS MS F


Table

Location

Table x location

Residual

Total




Table

Location

Table x location

Residual

Total




Table

Location

Table x location

Residual

Total


Test questions

2.13

.62

4.27

47.73

54.77

Reading time

209.63

.02

124.42

2730.03

3064.21


Test time

26.24

21.08

7.38

802.23

861.89


.71

.62

1.42

.88


.80

.70

1.61


69.88

.02

41.47

50.56


1.38

.00

.82


8.75

21.08

2.46

14.86


.59

1.42

.17









that all subjects could answer the inserted questions re-

gardless of the type of table present with the instruc-

tional materials.


Reading Time

It was anticipated that subjects not receiving the two-

page schema would spend less time with the instructional

materials. An analysis of variance revealed no significant

differences between groups (Table 17)


Test Time

An analysis of variance was performed on test time.

Results indicated that no significant differences existed

between groups (Table 17).


Aptitude x Treatment Interactions

The following hypothesis was of major concern relative

to aptitude x treatment interactions:

There will be a differential relationship between cri-

terion performance and aptitudes of subjects as measured by

the vocabulary, associative memory, science knowledge, and

fluid ability measures.


Aptitude x Table x Location

Since both type of table and location of table were

varied in the study, possible three-way interactions be-

tween treatment conditions and student aptitudes were

investigated. A regression solution for a two-way analysis









of covariance was used to detect possible interactions. The

existence of interactions was evaluated by comparing the

regression slopes for each treatment condition. An aptitude

x treatment interaction existed if the regression lines were

significantly nonparallel. Analyses were conducted using

scores on the forced choice items, the constructed answer

items, and the total posttest.

Three-way interactions were investigated using the 14

forced choice items on the posttest as the dependent mea-

sure. No significant interactions were found for science

knowledge, F (3,46) = .81; associative memory, F (3,44) =

.24; vocabulary, F (3,46) = .10; or hidden figures, F (3,44)

= .76.

Possible three-way interactions were also investigated

using the 14 constructed answer items on the posttest as the

dependent variable. No significant interactions were de-

tected for science knowledge, F (3,46) = .96; associative

memory, F (3,44) = .61; vocabulary, F (3,46) = 1.22; or

hidden figures, F (3,44) = 1.82.

Finally, three-way interactions were investigated using

the total posttest as the dependent variable. As with the

previous two sets of analyses, no significant interactions

were detected for science knowledge, F (3,46) = .96; associa-

tive memory, F (3,44) = .29; vocabulary, F (3,46) = .57; or

hidden figures, F (3,44) = 1.44.








Two-Way Interactions

Since no three-way interactions of aptitude x table x

location were detected for any of the aptitude variables,

analyses were performed investigating possible two-way inter-

actions. Aptitude x table and aptitude x location interac-

tions were examined using forced choice items, constructed

answer items, and the total posttest as the dependent mea-

sures. The following 24 combinations of independent and

dependent variables were used to investigate aptitude x treat-

ment interactions:

1. Science knowledge x table for forced choice items

2. Science knowledge x table for constructed answer

items

3. Science knowledge x table for total posttest

4. Vocabulary x table for forced choice items

5. Vocabulary x table for constructed answer items

6. Vocabulary x table for total posttest

7. Associative memory x table for forced choice items

8. Associative memory x table for constructed answer

items

9. Associative memory x table for total posttest

10. Hidden figures x table for forced choice items

11. Hidden figures x table for constructed answer items

12. Hidden figures x table for total posttest

13. Science knowledge x location for forced choice

items









14. Science knowledge x location for constructed

answer items

15. Science knowledge x location for total post-

test

16. Vocabulary x location for forced choice items

17. Vocabulary x location for constructed answer

items

18. Vocabulary x location for total posttest

19. Associative memory x location for forced choice


items

20. Associative memory x location

answer items

21. Associative memory x location

22. Hidden figures x location for

items

23. Hidden figures x location for

items

24. Hidden figures x location for


for constructed



for total posttest

forced choice



constructed answer


total posttest


For science knowledge, associative memory, and hidden

figures no significant interactions were detected. The F

values for aptitude x table and aptitude x location interac-

tions appear in Tables 18 and 19 respectively.

For vocabulary, however, a significant vocabulary x

table interaction, F (3,49) = 3.22, and a significant vocabu-

lary x location interaction, F (1,49) = 4.46, were detected

for forced choice items. In addition, the vocabulary x









Table 18
F Values for Aptitude x Table Interactions Between
Aptitudes and Criteria Measures for School 0


Interaction df F



Forced choice items

Science knowledge x table 3,49 .88

Associative memory x table 3,47 1.88

Hidden figures x table 3,47 .21


Constructed answer items

Science knowledge x table 3,49 .02

Associative memory x table 3,47 .52

Hidden figures x table 3,47 .07


Total posttest

Science knowledge x table 3,49 .27

Associative memory x table 3,47 1.11

Hidden figures x table 3,47 .07









Table 19
F Values for Aptitude x Location Interactions
Between Aptitudes and Criteria Measures for School 0


Interaction df F



Forced choice items

Science knowledge x location 1,49 .02

Associative memory x location 1,47 .66

Hidden figures x location 1,47 .05


Constructed answer items

Science knowledge x location 1,49 .00

Associative memory x location 1,47 1.63

Hidden figures x location 1,47 .00


Total posttest

Science knowledge x location 1,49 .00

Associative memory x location 1,47 1.16

Hidden figures x location 1,47 .00









table and vocabulary x location interactions for the total

posttest approached significance. The F tables for vocabu-

lary x table and vocabulary x location interactions for all

three dependent measures are summarized in Table 20. The

slopes and intercepts for the regression lines representing

each treatment appear in Table 21. Finally, the significant

vocabulary x table and vocabulary x location interactions

for the forced choice items appear in Figures 4, 5, and 6.

Follow-up Bonferroni t tests on the vocabulary x table

regression slopes failed to detect the nature of the inter-

action. However, from the confidence intervals produced, it

appeared that the vocabulary x traditional table regression

slope was negative and significantly different from the

slopes produced by the other three tables. All modified

tables had a positive slope and no differences seemed to

appear between the groups.

The vocabulary x location interaction indicated that for

each type of table the regression line for the nonattached

location of the table was flatter. Thus lower ability

students benefited more from the nonattached periodic table

condition.









Table 20
F Table for Testing Aptitude x Treatment Interactions
Between Vocabulary and Criteria Measures for School 0


Source df SS MS F


Forced choice items


Vocabulary x
table

Vocabulary x
location

Residual

Total




Vocabulary x
table

Vocabulary x
location

Residual

Total




Vocabulary x
table

Vocabulary x
location

Residual

Total


41.95


19.32

212.45

317.35


13.98


19.32

4.34


Constructed answer items


19.24


7.28

255.21

364.77


6.41


7.28

5.21


Total posttest


117.00


49.67

781.86

1197.69


39.00


49.67

15.96


*p<.05.


3.22*


4.46*


1.23


1.40


2.41


3.11









Table 21
Intercepts and Slopes for


Regression Lines


Forced choice items Total posttest

Treatmenta Intercept Slope Intercept Slope

TS-A 9.25 -.01 16.28 .06

TS-NA 15.38 -.29 27.24 -.39

NUS-A -.34 .44 -2.10 .92

NUS-NA 6.54 .17 10.96 .48

VS-A .80 .45 3.63 .79

VS-NA 6.20 .17 12.41 .35

V-A 2.56 .40 5.82 .74

V-NA 7.04 .13 12.97 .30



aTS-A = traditional table, attached, schema present;
TS-NA = traditional table, not attached, schema present;
NUS-A = table with added numerical data, attached, schema
present; NUS-NA = table with added numerical data, not at-
tached, schema present; VS-A = table with added visual data,
attached, schema present; VS-NA = table with added visual
data, not attached, schema present; V-A = table with added
visual data, attached, no schema; V-NA = table with added
visual data, not attached, no schema.







































































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CHAPTER V
DISCUSSION AND IMPLICATIONS


This study sought to examine the effects of modifica-

tions to the traditional periodic table. The determination

of which variations in the periodic table appeared best for

particular types of students was also of interest. Some

general premises basic to the study included the following:

1. Because the periodic table contains information

presented throughout chemistry textbooks, it can be

considered a condensed analog of the written mate-

rials.

2. The internal processing activities which contribute

to the encoding of information can be influenced

by the nature of the physical stimulus such that

the structure and organization of the stimulus can

reduce the processing burden placed on the learner.

3. A table modified by the addition of information may

produce a more complete content structure which may

help students process the data and relationships

from the table.

4. The effectiveness of different versions of the

periodic table will vary from individual to indi-

vidual with differences being correlated with

learner aptitudes.









Instructional Treatment Main Effects

Modification of the Periodic Table

The first hypothesis tested was

1. Subjects receiving periodic tables modified by the

addition of numerical or visual information will

perform significantly better on the criterion mea-

sure than subjects receiving the traditional peri-

odic table.

In order to investigate main effects for type of table,

location of table, and the presence of a schema, a regres-

sion equation was used containing both table and location as

components in the regression model. A significant F statis-

tic indicated differences between treatment conditions.

Bonferroni t tests were used to detect the nature of any dif-

ferences.

When the dependent variable was the forced choice por-

tion of the posttest,a significant table effect was detected

for subjects having little prior experience with the peri-

odic table. In addition, a marginally significant table

effect was found for the total posttest. Follow-up analyses

suggested that subjects who used the periodic table with

added visual information performed better than subjects who

used either the traditional table or the table modified with

added numerical information. No differences were detected

between the latter two tables.








As anticipated, the periodic table modified with visual

information proved to be superior to the traditional periodic

table. When compared to the traditional table,the informa-

tion presented on the visual table provided a more complete

content structure for the user of the table. Both the added

information and the visual mode of presentation may have

helped students transfer content relationships from the

written materials to the table and vice versa, much as in

Gentner's (1980) research on structure mapping between con-

tent domains. In addition, color and shading were used on

the visual table to group related elements. These modifica-

tions may have served to direct students' attention to spe-

cific properties of elements as well as to help students

organize parts of the complex display, thus reducing the

processing burden. These functions are consistent with

Chute's (1979) conclusion that color's importance in other

visuals rested primarily on the degree to which color facili-

tated for the learner the organizing and structuring of the

presented stimuli.

The table with added visual information was also supe-

rior to the table with added numerical information. Be-

cause many of the properties of elements depend upon atomic

structure, the relative sizes of the atoms were included

on the modified tables. On the visual table the relative

size was designated by a semicircle representing the outer

shell of the atom. Learners should quickly see this









semicircle when viewing the table. This focusing of atten-

tion may then help students perceive the importance of

atomic structure and the properties derived from it. Stu-

dents who viewed the table with added numerical information

were presented with a numerical representation of atomic

size. These students would have to distinguish this number

from the other numerical data presented within each block,

translate the number into a view of the atom, compare this

view with views of other elements' atoms derived the same

way, and then derive the properties from atomic structure.

Consequently, the greater processing requirements of the

numerical table as well as the relatively short exposure to

the materials may have resulted in the superiority of the

table with added visual data.

Finally, no differences were detected between the tradi-

tional periodic table and the table with added numerical

information,which supports Dwyer's (1972) contention that

the mere addition of information to a visual does not

automatically enhance learning from it. Apparently the

added numerical information did not function to help stu-

dents structure and process the relationships from the

table. Because students had little prior experience with

the table, the short treatment exposure may have limited

the amount of processing which occurred, thus minimizing

the effects of the added information. Perhaps with longer

instructional periods differences between these tables may

develop.









For subjects who had already been taught the periodic

table no significant main effects for table were detected.

This result is not surprising in light of Larkin's (1980)

work with expert-novice learning. Subjects who already

experienced and used the table might be considered equiva-

lent to "experts." Consequently, they would have developed

a network of relationships between the content contained on

the table and content derived from it. Modifications de-

signed to help students develop such a structure would not

prove beneficial.

In summary, the data partially supported hypothesis one.

Although results depended upon prior experience with the

periodic table, some subjects did appear to benefit from

modifications to the table. However, the type of modifica-

tion was crucial. Subjects performed better when modifica-

tions such as visual representations of atoms, color, and

shading were used. These modifications seemed to help stu-

dents organize and process the relationships between

chemistry topics depicted on the periodic table and referred

to in the literature.


Location of the Table

The second hypothesis tested was

2. Subjects receiving periodic tables not attached to

the written materials will perform significantly

better on the criterion measure than subjects re-

ceiving periodic tables attached to the instruc-

tional materials.









Inspection of F statistics failed to support this hy-

pothesis. No significant main effect for location was found

at either school, although trends suggested that the table

not attached to the instructional materials was the superior

location.

Students often perceive the written material explain-

ing the periodic table as new and complex. Therefore, in

order to apply the written material to the table, students

must constantly view the table. A table located at the back

of a textbook places a major emphasis on a student's short-

term memory. Students must read the content, hold the con-

tent in memory, turn to the table, retrieve the content, ap-

ply the content to the table, store information obtained

from the table, and refer back to the text. This compli-

cated procedure can lead to confusion and gaps at any one

point. By providing a table alongside the written materials,

educators could reduce the memory burden,which should

facilitate processing of the information. Hence it was an-

ticipated that subjects using a periodic table alongside the

written materials would learn more than subjects required to

constantly turn to the back of the materials in order to use

the table. Such a result would have implications for text-

book publishers who are deciding whether or not to include

removable inserts in texts.

Although no differences were detected in this study,

generalizations from this result should be limited.




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