Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Honors Thesis



First Advisor

Brian Day


Sight is incredibly important to daily life. One critical use of this sense is reading, which allows people to communicate and learn new things if the reader is able to effectively comprehend what he or she has read. The proliferation of technology has resulted in much of our reading today being done through digital media. Information-presenting screens are found nearly everywhere, including within the education system. While E-books can offer some advantages, their purpose would not be served if they hindered understanding. Additionally, excessive use of technological devices can bring about symptoms of eyestrain. It was hypothesized that E-books are in fact neither helpful nor harmful in reading comprehension but may increase reading time.

In the present study, 40 students at Butler University read a short story either on paper or on a laptop screen. They then took a quiz over the plot events of the short story, either in a physical or digital format. Lastly, they completed a short survey regarding their use of E-books and how their technological interactions affect their vision. It was found that the only factor that affected quiz scores was the testing medium. It is important, then, to ensure that online exams are user-friendly.

Included in

Psychology Commons