Conférence Lucia Mason

Jeudi 23 mai 2019 de 14h00 à 15h30 – Salle Guillaume Le Troubadour – MSHS

Lucia Mason, Université de Padoue, Italie.

Titre : «Exploring the Role of Psychophysiological Correlates of Reading Comprehension Performance: Evidence from a Research Program»

Résumé :

This presentation focuses on a research program that explored the psychophysiological correlates performance in complex academic tasks that involve cognitive and affective processes, such as reading expository texts to learn from them. We considered both single and multiple-text comprehension. By registering students physiological responses we can gain new understanding of person-related micro-level engagement processes during reading, that is, the fundamental learning activity.

Understanding the physiological processes that may enhance or hamper reading comprehension is relevant not only from a theoretical perspective but also for educational implications. We registered students’ cardiac activity which is connected to neural structures and is essential when facing challenging situations and self-regulating to respond to environmental demands. Specifically, we measured heart rate (HR) as indicator of arousal (emotional and cognitive) and heart rate variability (HRV) as indicator of self-regulation and adaptation to task requirements.

We also used electrodermal activity as a measure of arousal. In this research program the first study was carried out with university students in a departmental  lab, who read a science text with different reading goals. The others four studies involved 7th graders in the school context, who read multiple texts on the Internet. A consistent finding across all studies is that the lower the arousal, the greater the reading comprehension performance. In contrast, psychophysiological self-regulation, as indexed by HRV, positively contributed to post-reading performance in some of the studies. Findings are discussed in the light of main models that explain the role of cognitive processes and emotional experiences in learning activities.



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