Here's how reading on tablet and laptop can change your thnking

In a new find, researchers have revealed that people those who use their tablet and laptop for reading may interpret information differently than those who rely on the traditional ways for the reading purposes. Digital platforms can affect the thought process of people making them more inclined to focus on concrete details instead of interpreting information more abstractly, reveals new study.

Researchers from the Dartmouth College in the US conducted a study over 300 participants aged between 20 to 24 years. Study authors tried to compare the effect of digital platforms and non-digital platforms on construal levels. Construal levels are the fundamental level of concreteness versus abstractness that people use in perceiving and interpreting behaviors, events and other informational stimuli.

The study was divided into four parts. Each volunteer was asked to read a paragraph or a short story from both a digital platform and non-digital platform, and then researchers took a quiz.

It was found that participants scored higher on inference questions while using the non-digital platforms. Study subjects answered inference questions with 66 percent accuracy while using non-digital platforms, but there score fell to 48 percent while using 48 percent platforms.

However, digital platform won on the concrete questions with 73 percent correct answers when compared to just 58 percent correct answers on the digital platforms.

In an another test, researchers asked participants to read some fictitious information for about four times on both digital and non-digital platforms. 66 percent of participants answered correctly using non-digital platform against just 43 percent of those using the digital platforms.

“Given that psychologists have shown that construal levels can vastly impact outcomes such as self-esteem and goal pursuit, it is crucial to recognise the role that digitisation of information might be having on this important aspect of cognition,” said Geoff Kaufman from Dartmouth College.

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