Instructional Science

, Volume 42, Issue 2, pp 183–205 | Cite as

Students’ consideration of source information during the reading of multiple texts and its effect on intertextual conflict resolution



This study investigated students’ spontaneous use of source information for the resolution of conflicts between texts. One-hundred fifty-four undergraduate students read two conflicting explanations concerning the relationship between blood type and personality under two conditions: either one explanation with a higher credibility source and the opposite explanation with a lower credibility source or the same two explanations but with the sources interchanged. Afterwards, students wrote their opinions about the controversial issue. In their opinion essays, students were more likely to resolve the conflicts between the two explanations by affirming the one from the higher credible source and/or negating the opposite one from the lower credible source, though source manipulation had a small and partial effect on intertextual conflict resolution compared with the perceived quality of each explanation and prior attitudes. However, students’ attention to source information during reading and their use of the information for justifying their intertextual conflict resolution were limited. These results suggest that undergraduate students are capable of, but not good at, using source information for intertextual conflict resolution.


Intertextual conflict resolution Multiple texts Use of source information Undergraduate students 


  1. Afflerbach, P., & Cho, B. (2010). Determining and describing reading strategies: Internet and traditional forms of reading. In H. S. Waters & W. Schneider (Eds.), Metacognition, strategy use, and instruction (pp. 201–225). New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
  2. Bates, B. R., Romina, S., Ahmed, R., & Hopson, D. (2006). The effect of source credibility on consumers’ perceptions of the quality of health information on the Internet. Medical Informatics and the Internet in Medicine, 31, 45–52.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bazerman, C. (1985). Physicists reading physics: Schema-laden purposes and purpose-laden schema. Written Communication, 2, 3–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bordia, P., DiFonzo, N., Haines, R., & Chaseling, E. (2005). Rumors denials as persuasive messages: Effects of personal relevance, source, and message characteristics. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 35, 1301–1331.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bråten, I., & Strømsø, H. I. (2006). Effects of personal epistemology on the understanding of multiple texts. Reading Psychology, 27, 457–484.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bråten, I., Strømsø, H. I., & Britt, M. A. (2009). Trust matters: Examining the role of source evaluation in students’ construction of meaning within and across multiple texts. Reading Research Quarterly, 44, 6–28.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bråten, I., Strømsø, H. I., & Salmerón, L. (2011). Trust and mistrust when students read multiple information sources about climate change. Learning and Instruction, 21, 180–192.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Britt, M. A., & Aglinskas, C. (2002). Improving students’ ability to identify and use source information. Cognition and Instruction, 20, 485–522.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Britt, M. A., Perfetti, C. A., Sandak, R., & Rouet, J.-F. (1999). Content integration and source separation in learning from multiple texts. In S. R. Goldman, A. C. Graesser, & P. van den Broek (Eds.), Narrative comprehension, causality, and coherence: Essays in honor of Tom Trabasso (pp. 209–233). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  10. Britt, M. A., & Rouet, J.-F. (2012). Learning with multiple documents: Component skills and their acquisition. In J. R. Kirby & M. J. Lawson (Eds.), Enhancing the quality of learning: Dispositions, instruction and learning processes (pp. 276–314). New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Britt, M. A., & Sommer, J. (2004). Facilitating textual integration with macro-structure focusing tasks. Reading Psychology, 25, 313–339.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Caverly, D. C., Orlando, V. P., & Mullen, J.-A. L. (2000). Textbook study reading. In R. F. Flippo & D. C. Caverly (Eds.), Handbook of college reading and study strategy research (pp. 105–147). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  13. Cerdán, R., & Vidal-Abarca, E. (2008). The effects of tasks on integrating information from multiple documents. Journal of Educational Psychology, 100, 209–222.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Chaiken, S., & Maheswaran, D. (1994). Heuristic processing can bias systematic processing: Effects of source credibility, argument ambiguity, and task importance on attitude judgment. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 66, 460–473.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Chebat, J. C., Filiatrault, P., Laroche, M., & Watson, C. (1988). Compensatory effects of cognitive characteristics of the source, the message, and the receiver upon attitude change. Journal of Psychology, 122, 609–621.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Cohen, J., Cohen, P., West, S. G., & Aiken, L. S. (2003). Applied multiple regression/correlation analysis for the behavioral sciences (3rd ed.). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  17. Cramer, K. M., & Imaike, E. (2002). Personality, blood type, and the five-factor model. Personality and Individual Differences, 32, 621–626.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Deutsch, M., Coleman, P. T., & Marcus, E. C. (Eds.). (2006). The handbook of conflict resolution: Theory and practice (2nd ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
  19. Fujita, K. (2006). Parasaito-shiki ketsuekigata-shindan [Parasitological blood type analysis]. Tokyo: Shinchosha.Google Scholar
  20. Furnham, A., & Schofield, S. (1987). Accepting personality test feedback: A review of the Barnum effect. Current Psychology, 6, 162–178.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Geisler, C. (1994). Academic literacy and the nature of expertise: Reading, writing, and knowing in academic philosophy. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  22. Goldberg, T., Schwarz, B. B., & Porat, D. (2008). Living and dormant collective memories as contexts of history learning. Learning and Instruction, 18, 223–237.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Graesser, A. C., Wiley, J., Goldman, S. R., O’Reilly, T., Jeon, M., & McDaniel, B. (2007). SEEK Web tutor: Fostering a critical stance while exploring the causes of volcanic eruption. Metacognition Learning, 2, 89–105.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Harmon, R. R., & Coney, K. A. (1982). The persuasive effects of source credibility in buy and lease situations. Journal of Marketing Research, 19, 255–260.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hidi, S., & Klaiman, R. (1983). Notetaking by experts and novices: An attempt to identify teachable strategies. Curriculum Inquiry, 13, 377–395.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Homer, P. M., & Kahle, L. R. (1990). Source expertise, time of source identification, and involvement in persuasion: An elaborative processing perspective. Journal of Advertising, 19, 30–39.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Hynd, C. R. (1999). Teaching students to think critically using multiple texts in history. Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, 42, 428–436.Google Scholar
  28. Iding, M. K., Crosby, M. E., Auernheimer, B., & Klemm, E. B. (2009). Web site credibility: Why do people believe what they believe? Instructional Science, 37, 43–63.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Itou, T. (1994). Ketsueki-gata-seikaku-handan to shinjiru kokoro [Blood type personality tests and credulous mind]. L’esprit D’aujourd’hui, 324, 106–113.Google Scholar
  30. Kienhues, D., Stadtler, M., & Bromme, R. (2011). Dealing with conflicting or consistent medical information on the web: When expert information breeds laypersons’ doubts about experts. Learning and Instruction, 21, 193–204.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Kintsch, W. (1994). Text comprehension, memory, and learning. American Psychologist, 49, 294–303.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Kintsch, W. (1998). Comprehension: A paradigm for cognition. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  33. Kobayashi, K. (2005). What limits the encoding effect of note-taking? A meta-analytic examination. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 30, 242–262.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Kobayashi, K. (2006). Combined effects of note-taking/-reviewing on learning and the enhancement through interventions: A meta-analytic review. Educational Psychology, 26, 459–477.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Kobayashi, K. (2007). The influence of critical reading orientation on external strategy use during expository text reading. Educational Psychology, 27, 1–13.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Kobayashi, K. (2009). The influence of topic knowledge, external strategy use, and college experience on students’ comprehension of controversial texts. Learning and Individual Differences, 19, 130–134.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Kobayashi, K. (2010). Strategic use of multiple texts for the evaluation of arguments. Reading Psychology, 31, 121–149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Nan, X. (2009). The influence of source credibility on attitude certainty: Exploring the moderating effects of timing of source identification and individual need for cognition. Psychology & Marketing, 26, 321–332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Nickerson, R. S. (1998). Confirmation bias: A ubiquitous phenomenon in many guises. Review of General Psychology, 2, 175–220.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Nokes, J. D., Dole, J. A., & Hacker, D. J. (2007). Teaching high school students to use heuristics while reading historical texts. Journal of Educational Psychology, 99, 492–504.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Nussbaum, E. M., & Schraw, G. (2007). Promoting argument–counterargument integration in students’ writing. The Journal of Experimental Education, 76, 59–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. O’Keefe, D. J. (2002). Persuasion: Theory and research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  43. Perfetti, C. A., Britt, M. A., & Georgi, M. C. (1995). Text-based learning and reasoning: Studies in history. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  44. Perfetti, C. A., Rouet, J.-F., & Britt, M. C. (1999). Towards a theory of documents representation. In H. van Oostendorp & S. R. Goldman (Eds.), The construction of mental representations during reading (pp. 99–122). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  45. Petty, R. E., Cacioppo, J. T., & Goldman, R. (1981). Personal involvement as a determinant of argument-based persuasion. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 41, 847–855.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Pichert, J. W., & Anderson, R. C. (1977). Taking different perspectives on a story. Journal of Educational Psychology, 69, 309–315.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Rieh, S. Y. (2002). Judgment of information quality and cognitive authority in the Web. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 53, 145–161.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Rogers, M., & Glendon, A. I. (2003). Blood type and personality. Personality and Individual Differences, 34, 1099–1112.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Rouet, J.-F. (2006). The skills of document use: From text comprehension to web-based learning. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  50. Rouet, J.-F., & Britt, M. A. (2011). Relevance processes in multiple document comprehension. In M. T. McCrudden, J. P. Magliano, & G. Schraw (Eds.), Text relevance and learning from text (pp. 19–52). Charlotte, NC: Information Age.Google Scholar
  51. Rouet, J.-F., Britt, M. A., Mason, R. A., & Perfetti, C. A. (1996). Using multiple sources of evidence to reason about history. Journal of Educational Psychology, 88, 478–493.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Rouet, J.-F., Favart, M., Britt, M. A., & Perfetti, C. A. (1997). Studying and using multiple documents in history: Effects of discipline expertise. Cognition and Instruction, 15, 85–106.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Rukavina, I., & Daneman, M. (1996). Integration and its effect on acquiring knowledge about competing scientific theories from text. Journal of Educational Psychology, 88, 272–287.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Stadtler, M., & Bromme, R. (2007). Dealing with multiple documents on the WWW: The role of metacognition in the formation of documents models. Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning, 2, 191–210.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Stadtler, M., & Bromme, R. (2008). Effects of the metacognitive computer-tool meta.a.ware on the web search of laypersons. Computers in Human Behavior, 24, 716–737.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Stahl, S. A., Hynd, C. R., Britton, B. K., McNish, M. M., & Bosquet, D. (1996). What happens when students read multiple source documents in history? Reading Research Quarterly, 31, 430–456.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Sternthal, B., Dholakia, R., & Leavitt, C. (1978). The persuasive effect of source credibility: Tests of cognitive response. Journal of Consumer Research, 4, 252–260.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Strømsø, H. I., Bråten, I., & Britt, M. A. (2010). Reading multiple texts about climate change: The relationship between memory for sources and text comprehension. Learning and Instruction, 20, 192–204.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Uemura, A., & Sato, T. (2006). Giji-seikaku-riron toshiteno ketuekigata-kanren-setsu no tayousei [Blood-typing as a pseudo-personality theory and diversity of its explanatory styles]. Japanese Journal of Personality, 15, 33–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Walraven, A., Brand-Gruwel, S., & Boshuizen, H. P. A. (2008). Information-problem solving: A review of problems students encounter and instructional solutions. Computers in Human Behavior, 24, 623–648.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Walton, D. N. (1997). Appeal to expert opinion: Arguments from authority. University Park, PA: The Pennsylvania State University Press.Google Scholar
  62. Wathen, C. N., & Burkell, J. (2002). Believe it or not: Factors influencing credibility on the web. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 53, 134–144.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Wiley, J., Ash, I. K., Sanchez, C. A., & Jaeger, A. (2011). Relevance processes in multiple document comprehension. In M. T. McCrudden, J. P. Magliano, & G. Schraw (Eds.), Text relevance and learning from text (pp. 353–374). Charlotte, NC: Information Age.Google Scholar
  64. Wiley, J., Goldman, S. R., Graesser, A. C., Sanchez, C. A., Ash, I. K., & Hemmerich, J. A. (2009). Source evaluation, comprehension, and learning in Internet science inquiry tasks. American Educational Research Journal, 46, 1060–1106.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Wineburg, S. S. (1991). Historical problem solving: A study of the cognitive processes used in the evaluation of documentary and pictorial evidence. Journal of Educational Psychology, 83, 73–87.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Wineburg, S. S. (1994). The cognitive representation of historical texts. In G. Leinhardt, I. Beck, & C. Stainton (Eds.), Teaching and learning in history (pp. 85–135). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  67. Wineburg, S. S. (1998). Reading Abraham Lincoln: An expert/expert study in the interpretation of historical texts. Cognitive Science, 22, 319–346.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Wolfe, M. B. W., & Goldman, S. R. (2005). Relations between adolescents’ text processing and reasoning. Cognition and Instruction, 23, 467–502.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Wu, K., Lindsted, K. D., & Lee, J. W. (2005). Blood type and the five factors of personality in Asia. Personality and Individual Differences, 38, 797–808.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of EducationShizuoka UniversityShizuokaJapan

Personalised recommendations