Concreteness and imagery effects in the written composition of definitions.

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
William A. Kealy, Visiting Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: Concreteness and imagery effects have been found to be among the most powerful in explaining performance on a variety of language tasks. Concreteness and imagery effects involve the capacity of concrete language to evoke sensory images in the mind (e.g., juicy watermelon), whereas abstract language has relatively less capacity to do so (e.g., agriculturalproduce). The effects of concreteness and imagery on reading and text recall have been well-established (e.g., Goetz, Sadoski, Fatemi, & Bush, 1994; Paivio, 1971, 1986; Paivio, Walsh, & Bons, 1994; Sadoski, Goetz, & Avila, 1995; Sadoski, Goetz, & Fritz, 1993a, 1993b). Concrete words, phrases, sentences, and texts have been found to be more imageable, comprehensible, memorable, and interesting than abstract language units even when other relevant contextual variables are carefully controlled. These results can be consistently interpreted by dual coding theory (Paivio, 1971, 1986, 1991), which maintains that cognition involves the operation of two separate but interconnected systems, one for verbal representations and processes and one for nonverbal (imagery) representations and processes.

Additional Information

Journal of Educational Psychology, 89, 518-526
Language: English
Date: 1997
Concreteness, Imagery Effects, Sensory images

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