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Encoding and retrieval of information in maps and diagrams

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1 Author(s)
W. Winn ; Coll. of Educ., Washington Univ., Seattle, WA, USA

Research into perceptual and cognitive processes has focused on how people process and understand information presented in maps and diagrams. The author examines why graphics function the way they do. The basic constitution of a graphic item, the sequence in which the mind processes those items, the strategies people use to encode and remember information in graphics, the conjoint encoding of verbal and visual forms and the encoding of clusters for items and their labels are addressed. The importance of configuration and discrimination in encoding, understanding, and retrieving information in graphics is demonstrated. It is suggested that the discovery of predictable relationships concerning how items and interitem relationships are shown in graphics, and encoding and retrieval performance can form the basis of a theory from which to conduct further research and on which to build prescriptions for graphic design

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication  (Volume:33 ,  Issue: 3 )