This study examined whether specific relevance instructions affect transfer appropriate processing. Undergraduates (n = 52) were randomly assigned to one of three pre-reading question conditions that asked them what-questions, why-questions, or to read for understanding (i.e., control condition). There were no differences in reading time across conditions for sentences targeted by the pre-reading questions. There were three main findings with respect to cued recall. First, participants in the experimental conditions did better on questions that had greater similarity to relevance instructions than questions that had lesser similarity to relevance instructions. Second, participants in the experimental conditions did better on questions that had greater similarity to relevance instructions than the participants in the other conditions on those same questions. Third, participants in the control condition recalled equal amounts of information for both question. The results suggest that specific relevance instructions promote transfer appropriate processing and affect the quality of memory for text.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Developmental and Educational Psychology