Degree Name

Master of Arts (Hons.)


Department of Psychology


This is an investigation into factors affecting retention of text material read for tertiary studies. There are a number of factors that researchers have used to increase depth of processing and thereby improve retention, but little has been reported as broadly useful to education. Can this be remedied by taking into account individual differences with particular emphasis given to cognitive style, and matching a student's style with the mode of presentation? A definition of cognitive style from Witkin Oltman Raskin and Karp (1971), is that ''cognitive styles are the characteristic, self consistent modes of functioning which individuals show in their perceptual and intellectual activities". Pizzamiglio and Zoccolotti (1986) say that a cognitive style describes the mode of information processing, rather than the level of performance.