Date of Award

8-1978

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Department

Education and Human Development

First Advisor

Dr. Gerald Begy

Abstract

This study investigated the ability of children completing a kindergarten program to perform a visual selective attention task.

It also examined the data to determine if measurement of the task in the visual area would complement significantly a traditional reading readiness assessment.

Subjects were instructed to sort 25 stimulus cards according to the central feature, the Greek letter. They were told to ignore the incidental features of card shape, card background color and color of the Greek letter. The subjects were given a central score for the cards correctly grouped. After completing the task, the subjects were asked to recall the card shapes and card background colors to see if any incidental learning had taken place. Correct answers yielded an incidental score.

The results demonstrate that central and incidental learning have an inverse relationship to each other. The results also indicate that children completing a kindergarten program can successfully perform a visual selective attention task with a high degree of accuracy.

Longitudinal evidence is necessary before it can be determined if measurement of this task would complement significantly a traditional reading readiness assessment. The use of a visual selective attention task may be a useful additional screening procedure, especially where traditional measures are inconclusive.

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