The effect of graphical format and instruction on the interpretation of three-variable bar and line graphs

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

We present a study that investigates how graph format and training can affect undergraduate psychology students’ ability to interpret three-variable bar and line graphs. A pre and post-test design was employed to assess 76 students’ conceptual understanding of three-variable graphs prior to and after a training intervention. The study revealed that significant differences in interpretation are produced by graph format prior to training; bar graph users outperform line graph users. Training also resulted in a statistically significant improvement in interpretation of both graph formats with effect sizes confirming the intervention resulted in substantial learning gains in graph interpretation. This resulted in bar graph users outperforming line graph users pre and post training making it the superior format even when training has occurred. The effect of graph format and training differed depending on task demands. Based on the results of this experiment, it is argued that undergraduate students’ interpretations of such three-variable data are more accurate when using the bar form. Findings also demonstrate how a brief tutorial can result in large gains in graph comprehension scores. We provide a test which can be used to assess students understanding of three-variable graphs and the tutorial developed for the study for educators to use.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 10th International Conference on the Theory and Application of Diagrams
EditorsGem Stapleton, Francesco Bellucci, Amirouche Moktefi, Peter Chapman, Sarah Perez-Kriz
PublisherSpringer Verlag
Pages429-440
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9783319913766
ISBN (Print)9783319913759
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 May 2018
Event10th International Conference on the Theory and Application of Diagrams - Edinburgh Napier University, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Duration: 18 Jun 201822 Jun 2018
Conference number: 10
http://www.diagrams-conference.org/2018/ (Link to Conference Website)

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science
PublisherSpringer
ISSN (Electronic)0302-9743

Conference

Conference10th International Conference on the Theory and Application of Diagrams
Abbreviated titleDiagrams 2018
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityEdinburgh
Period18/06/1822/06/18
Internet address

Fingerprint

Bar chart
Line Graph
Students
Graph in graph theory
Effect Size
Graphics
Interpretation
Training
Experiments

Cite this

Ali, N., & Peebles, D. (2018). The effect of graphical format and instruction on the interpretation of three-variable bar and line graphs. In G. Stapleton, F. Bellucci, A. Moktefi, P. Chapman, & S. Perez-Kriz (Eds.), Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on the Theory and Application of Diagrams (pp. 429-440). (Lecture Notes in Computer Science). Springer Verlag. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-91376-6_39
Ali, Nadia ; Peebles, David. / The effect of graphical format and instruction on the interpretation of three-variable bar and line graphs. Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on the Theory and Application of Diagrams. editor / Gem Stapleton ; Francesco Bellucci ; Amirouche Moktefi ; Peter Chapman ; Sarah Perez-Kriz. Springer Verlag, 2018. pp. 429-440 (Lecture Notes in Computer Science).
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Ali, N & Peebles, D 2018, The effect of graphical format and instruction on the interpretation of three-variable bar and line graphs. in G Stapleton, F Bellucci, A Moktefi, P Chapman & S Perez-Kriz (eds), Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on the Theory and Application of Diagrams. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Springer Verlag, pp. 429-440, 10th International Conference on the Theory and Application of Diagrams, Edinburgh, United Kingdom, 18/06/18. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-91376-6_39

The effect of graphical format and instruction on the interpretation of three-variable bar and line graphs. / Ali, Nadia; Peebles, David.

Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on the Theory and Application of Diagrams. ed. / Gem Stapleton; Francesco Bellucci; Amirouche Moktefi; Peter Chapman; Sarah Perez-Kriz. Springer Verlag, 2018. p. 429-440 (Lecture Notes in Computer Science).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

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Ali N, Peebles D. The effect of graphical format and instruction on the interpretation of three-variable bar and line graphs. In Stapleton G, Bellucci F, Moktefi A, Chapman P, Perez-Kriz S, editors, Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on the Theory and Application of Diagrams. Springer Verlag. 2018. p. 429-440. (Lecture Notes in Computer Science). https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-91376-6_39