Black holes and vacuum cleaners: Using metaphor, relevance, and inquiry in labels for space images

Smith, Lisa F. and Arcand, Kimberley K. and Smith, Benjamin K. and Smith, Roger and Bookbinder, Jay and Smith, Jeffrey K. (2017) Black holes and vacuum cleaners: Using metaphor, relevance, and inquiry in labels for space images. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 11 (3). ISSN 1931-390X(Electronic),1931-3896(Print)

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1037/aca0000130

Abstract

This study extended research on the development of explanatory labels for astronomical images for the nonexpert lay public. The research questions addressed how labels with leading questions/metaphors and relevance to everyday life affect comprehension of the intended message for deep space images, the desire to learn more, and the aesthetic appreciation of images. Participants were a convenience sample of 1,921 respondents solicited from a variety of websites and through social media who completed an online survey that used 4 high-resolution images as stimuli: Sagittarius A*, Solar Flare, Cassiopeia A, and the Pinwheel Galaxy (M101). Participants were randomly assigned initially to 1 of 3 label conditions: the standard label originally written for the image, a label with a leading question containing a metaphor related to the information for the image, or a label that contained a fact about the image relevant to everyday life. Participants were randomly assigned to 1 image and compared all labels for that image. Open-ended items at various points asked participants to pose questions to a hypothetical astronomer. Main findings were that the relevance condition was significantly more likely to increase wanting to learn more; the original label was most likely to increase overall appreciation; and smart phone users were more likely to want to learn more and report increased levels of appreciation. Results are discussed in terms of the need to examine individual viewer characteristics and goals in creating different labels for different audiences. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved)

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Astronomy Education Research
Depositing User: Mr Saeed Salimpour
Date Deposited: 05 Jun 2018 23:54
Last Modified: 19 Aug 2018 09:25
URI: http://istardb.org/id/eprint/1916

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