Effects of Provided versus Learner-Generated Pictures on Chinese Reading Comprehension


  •   I-Chen Wang


Concerning Computer Assisted Instruction (CAI), this research builds a “Provided Picture System” and a “Learner-Generated Picture System” based on related pedagogical principles. The effects and longevity of these two methodologies on improving students’ reading comprehension are compared through a teaching experiment. 96 fourth-grade students in a Taiwanese primary school were divided into the provided picture condition group (PPCG) and learner-generated picture condition group (LPCG) based on their reading comprehension test results. One-way ANOVA proved that the reading comprehension competency of these two groups was comparable. The PPCG was trained to read articles and examine pictures based on the articles’ themes by using the “Provided Picture System”. The LPGP was trained to read articles using the “Learner-Generated Picture System” before generating pictures corresponding to the theme of each paragraph. All students were required to take post-test and delayed post-test one and three weeks after the reading classes, respectively. Finally, paired-samples t-test was used to analyze the three test results. Analysis of the PPCG’s results indicated no significant difference in reading comprehension competency among the three tests before and after the experiment. In contrast, the LPCG’s reading comprehension competency improved significantly, and the effects persisted following the experiment. The results revealed that the learner-generated picture pedagogy was effective in improving students’ reading comprehension competency, superior to the provided picture pedagogy.


Keywords: Computer-Assisted Instruction (CAI), Learner-Generated Picture Pedagogy, Provided Picture Pedagogy, Reading


Ainsworth, S. (2010). Improving learning by drawing. Proceedings of the 9th international conference of the learning sciences. Chicago, 2, 167-168.

Ainsworth, S., Prain, V., & Tytler, R. (2011). Drawing to learn in science. Science, 333(6046), 1096–1097.

Bruner, J. S. (1966). Toward a theory of instruction. New York, NY: Norton.

Canham, M., & Hegarty, M. (2010). Effects of knowledge and display design on comprehension of complex graphics. Learning and Instruction, 20, 155–166.

de Vries, E., & Lowe, R. K. (2010). Graphicacy: What does the learner bring to a graphic? Comprehension of Text and Graphics Conference. Tübingen, Germany. http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11937/26759

Eitel, A., Scheiter, K., Schüler, A., Nyström, M., & Holmqvist, K. (2013). How a picture facilitates the process of learning from text: Evidence for scaffolding. Learning and Instruction, 28, 48–63.

Fehr, C. N., Davison, M. L., Graves, M. F., Sales, G. C., Seipel, B., & Sekhran-Sharma, S. (2012). The effects of individualized, online vocabulary instruction on picture vocabulary scores: an efficacy study. Computer Assisted Language Learning, 25(1), 87-102.

Gijlers, H., Weinberger, A., van Dijk, A. M., Bollen, L., & van Joolingen, W. (2013). Collaborative drawing on a shared digital canvas in elementary science education: The effects of script and task awareness support. Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning, 8, 427-453.

Hamden, A. R., Ghafar, M. N., Sihes, A. J., & Atan, S. B. (2010). The cognitive and meta-cognition strategies of foundation course students in teacher education institute in Malaysia. European Journal of Social Sciences, 13(1), 133-144.

Hedin, L.R., & Conderman, G. (2010). Teaching students to comprehend informational text through rereading. The Reading Teacher, 63(7), 556–565. doi:10.1598/RT.63.7.3

Ko, H.-W., & Chan, Y.-L. (2006). Reading comprehension screening test of fourth grade. Technical Team of Special Education, Taiwan’s Ministry of Education.

Leopold, C., & Leutner, D. (2012). Science text comprehension: Drawing, main idea selection, and summarization as learning strategies. Learning and Instruction, 22(1), 16–26.

Leopold, C., Sumfleth, E., & Leutner, D. (2013). Learning with summaries: Effects of representation mode and type of learning activity on comprehension and transfer. Learning and Instruction, 27, 40-49.

Leutner, D., Leopold, C., & Sumfleth, E. (2009). Cognitive load and science text comprehension: Effects of drawing and mentally imagining text content. Computers in Human Behavior, 25, 284–289.

Lin, P.-K., & Chi, P.-H. (2000). Chinese reading comprehension test. Ulletin of Special Education, 19(5), 79-104.

Maderazo, C., Martens, P., Croce, K., Martens, R., Doyle, M., Aghalarov, S., et al. (2010). Beyond picture walks: Revaluing picturebooks as written and pictorial texts. Language Arts, 87(6), 437–446.

Mason, L., Lowe, R., & Tornatora, M. C. (2013). Self-generated drawings for supporting comprehension of a complex animation. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 38, 211-224.

Paivio, A. (1990). Dual-coding theory: Retrospect and current status. Canadian Journal of Psychology, 45, 255-287.

Pike, M. M., Barnes, M. A., & Barron R. W. (2010). The role of illustrations in children’s inferential comprehension. Journal of Experimental Children Psychology, 105, 243-255.

Risko, V. J., Walker-Dalhouse, D., Bridges, E. S., & Wilson, A. (2011). Drawing on text features for reading comprehension and composing. The Reading Teacher, 64(5), 376-378.

Schwamborn, A., Thillmann, H., Opfermann, M., & Leutner, D. (2011). Cognitive load and instructionally supported learning with provided and learner-generated visualizations. Computers in Human Behavior, 27, 89-93.

Schwamborn, A., Mayer, R. E., Thillmann, H., Leopold, C., & Leutner, D. (2010). Drawing as a generative activity and drawing as a prognostic activity. Journal of Educational Psychology, 102(4), 872-879.

Stalbovs, K., Eitel, A., & Scheiter, K. (2013). Which cognitive processes predict successful learning with multimedia? Paper presented at the Fifteenth Biennial Conference of the European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction (EARLI), Munich, Germany.

Stull A. T. & Mayer R. E. (2007). Learning by doing versus learning by viewing: Three experimental comparisons of learner-generated versus author-provided graphic organizers. Journal of Educational Psychology, 99(4), 808-820.

Tare, M., Chiong, C., Ganea, P., & DeLoache, J. (2010). Less is more: How manipulative features affect children’s learning from picture. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 31(5), 395-400.

Türk, E. & Erçetin, G. (2014). Effects of interactive versus simultaneous display of multimedia glosses on L2 reading comprehension and incidental vocabulary learning. Computer Assisted Language Learning, 27(1), 1-25.

United Nations. 2013/4 Report: Teaching and learning: Achieving quality for all. Retrieved September 9, 2014, from http://www.unesco.org/new/en/education/themes/leading-the-international-agenda/efareport/reports/2013/

Van Meter, P., Aleksic, M., Schwartz, A., & Garner, J. (2006). Learner-generated drawing as a strategy for learning from content area text. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 31, 142–166.

Yu, X. (2012). Exploring visual perception and children's interpretations of picture books. Library & Information Science Research, 34, 292-299.


How to Cite
Wang, I.-C. (2022). Effects of Provided versus Learner-Generated Pictures on Chinese Reading Comprehension. European Journal of Education and Pedagogy, 3(3), 105–109. https://doi.org/10.24018/ejedu.2022.3.3.352