Date of Graduation
This study examined differences in cognitive structure, content knowledge, navigational difficulties, and personal interviews between organizer and non-organizer students in a hypermedia environment. This information was used to ascertain the feasibility of using the pictorial graphic organizer as a tool to help alleviate navigational difficulties in a learner-controlled hypermedia environment without imposing structure on the student. Sixty-nine students from an undergraduate course completed a computer questionnaire as well as a pre content knowledge test and a Pathfinder network. They were then exposed to a hypermedia program with the organizer group using a program that contained a pictorial graphic organizer and the non-organizer group using the same program without a pictorial graphic organizer. After the hypermedia treatment, students completed a navigational questionnaire as well as a post content knowledge test and a Pathfinder network. Six students were then interviewed about the experience. The results of this study indicated that both the organizer and non-organizer groups did equally well on the navigation questionnaire, the Pathfinder networks, and the post content knowledge test. However, the interview data indicated that the organizer group possessed a positive attitude towards the hypermedia experience while the non-organizer group was less than positive about the experience. In conclusion, the purpose of this study was to investigate the potential of a pictorial graphic organizer in alleviating navigational difficulties without imposing structure in a hypermedia environment. The findings from this study suggest that the pictorial graphic organizer used in this study did not statistically improve navigation and alleviate disorientation and cognitive overload in this instance, but it also did not impose structure on the learner. Thus, it was only partially effective and should be further investigated. What the findings did show, however, was that students who received the organizer maintained more positive feelings toward the experience than those who did not receive the organizer. This finding warrants further research on the contextual aspects of a pictorial graphic organizer.
Krawchuk, Cheryl Ann, "Pictorial graphic organizers, navigation, and hypermedia: Converging constructivist and cognitive theories." (1996). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 9230.