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Holistic Processing of Verbal and Non-Verbal Information in Single Integrated Visual Objects

Heidel, Varinia (2018) Holistic Processing of Verbal and Non-Verbal Information in Single Integrated Visual Objects. PhD thesis, University of Essex.


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The present work examined how holistic, conceptual processing could be achieved by meaningfully integrating verbal and non-verbal information into a single visual object, which would allow simultaneous, complementary encoding of both dimensions. The main interest of the current work was in the exploration of encoding and retention mechanisms associated with holistic processing. While both pictures and words have been investigated in isolation, less research exists to explore the complementary potential of both presentation formats. Even in instances where combined presentation is used, such as the Stroop effect (Stroop, 1935) the primary focus has been on interference rather than facilitation of processing. Overall results showed that holistic integration could be achieved successfully and visual integration of verbal and non-verbal information led to processing of both dimensions as a single object rather than as separate dimensions. While there may not be a direct recall benefit of integrated verbal and non-verbal information, combining pictures and words into a single visual object significantly increases stimulus recognisability regardless of encoding intention. In addition, holistic activation was achieved for verbally ambiguous stimuli. Findings indicate that integrated presentation of verbal and non-verbal information is encoded through a mostly incidental route, which is most accurately tested by using a recognition test. In addition, data show that although participants appear to rely mostly on the verbal dimension for positive identification of targets, non-verbal information is encoded successfully and significantly impacts encoding and retrieval processes. Results suggest that while integrated presentation does not aid free recall, it is highly effective in improving stimulus recognisability.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
Depositing User: Varinia Heidel
Date Deposited: 25 May 2018 12:16
Last Modified: 25 May 2018 12:16

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