Title page for ETD etd-02122009-181248

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Kolatsis, Anna
Email akolatsis@gmail.com
URN etd-02122009-181248
Document Title The effect of sequential exposure of colour conditions on rate and accuracy of graphic symbol location
Degree Master of Arts
Department Centre for Augmentative and Alternative Communication
Advisor Name Title
Dr M S Lilienfeld Co-Supervisor
Prof E Alant Supervisor
  • non-referential forms
  • meaningful symbols
  • sequential organization
  • AAC
  • colour vision
  • Augmentative and Alternative Communication
  • accuracy
  • rate
Date 2008-09-05
Availability unrestricted

There has been limited research done to determine the impact of the use of colour on communication displays in the facilitation of graphic symbol location within an overlay. As many Augmentative and Alternative Communication systems are pictorial in nature, it is of importance that interventionists are aware of the potential impact that colour can have on the accuracy and rate of symbol location. The present study is based on a study by Wilkinson, Carlin and Jagaroo (2006) and used the same testing material (colour conditions) whilst modifying the type of exposure to these colour conditions.

This study investigated the effect of sequential exposure of colour conditions on the rate and accuracy of graphic symbol location. The study used a comparative, non-experimental group design using sixty participants who conformed to specific selection criteria. Each participant was exposed to three colour conditions that were placed in a specific sequential order. The participants were required to match a target, graphic symbol within an array of symbols in the differing colour conditions. Two different types of graphic symbols were used meaningful (Type A) and arbitrary (Type B). Two different colour sets were also used with the colour conditions varying in each set. Set 1 were the sequentially ordered colour conditions of same colour, mixed colour and unique colour symbols (difficult to easy) while Set 2 were the sequentially ordered colour conditions of unique colour, mixed colour and same colour symbols (easy to difficult).

The major findings of the study were as follows. In terms of rate, there was a significant interaction noted between the two symbol types and their sequential ordering. The time taken (rate) for the location of the nonreferential forms was slower than that taken for the meaningful symbols. The reasoning behind this result could be that the non-referential forms were not as familiar to the participants as the meaningful symbols were. Thus, the rate recording of the meaningful symbols and the non-referential forms described in the three colour conditions was different and could be noted in the results.

In terms of accuracy, a significant impact was noted between the two symbol types when the first manner of sequential ordering was used, however, there were no significant differences noted when the second manner of sequential ordering was used. This implies greater accuracy was recorded when the second manner of sequential ordering was used as this ordering appeared to be “visually easier” for the location of symbols.

©University of Pretoria 2008

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