Effects of Study Modality and Study Order on Learning Braille and Other Haptic Alphabets Used by Blind Persons

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Title: Effects of Study Modality and Study Order on Learning Braille and Other Haptic Alphabets Used by Blind Persons
Author: Mroczka, Mary Ann
Advisors: Brad Mehlenbacher, Committee Member
James W. Kalat, Committee Member
Michael S. Wogalter, Committee Co-Chair
Slater E. Newman, Committee Co-Chair
Abstract: Braille is the alphabet predominantly used today for total communication by blind persons; yet, its difficulty to learn prevents some from using it. This experiment compared learning of three alphabets used by blind persons, Braille, Moon and Fishburne. The effects of study modality (visual, haptic) and study order (random, alphabetical) were also investigated. Participants were given four study-test sequences to learn the names for each of the 26 symbols of one of the three alphabets. On test trials, all participants were tested haptically in different random orders. Results showed main effects for alphabet, study modality, trials and an interaction between trials and alphabet. Moon was easier to learn than Braille, which was easier to learn than the Fishburne alphabet. Visual study facilitated learning only with the Moon alphabet. Results are interpreted in terms of McGuire's (1961) three proposed processes involved in paired-associate learning: stimulus discrimination, associative learning, and response learning. Some implications for training are also discussed.
Date: 2005-12-02
Degree: PhD
Discipline: Psychology
URI: http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/resolver/1840.16/4453


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