Transfer of learning between screen-based and gallery-based content: an initial study

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

264 Downloads (Pure)


We ran a participatory design and evaluation of a paper prototype mobile application, called Digital Islam, to engage visitors and provide additional information in the British Museum’s Islamic Gallery. An evolutionary paper prototyping exercise involving 28 visitors aged 18-60 was run for 3 weeks. As visitors interacted with the paper prototype, we manipulated the prototype, observed the visitors as they interacted with it and took notes. We asked the
visitors to “think aloud” while interacting with the prototype. The prototype rapidly evolved as visitor feedback was fed back into the design. Visitors usually do not receive explicit training in the use of museum applications, instead relying on tacit training that may have positive or negative effects depending on what learning is transferred. Our study appeared to show negative transfer between visitors’ interactions with content in the gallery and content in the
application. Visitors were asked to perform 3 tasks, finding (A) content in the gallery; (B) textual content on screen; and (C) video content on screen. Redesigns of the interface had little impact on users’ performance. The order of tasks and consequent transfer of learning between them seemed to be more important. Visitors found Task B particularly challenging when preceded by Task A. When we introduced Task C between A and B, performance on task B immediately improved: users found the on screen content more easily and faster and no
longer looked fruitlessly for it in the gallery. The study suggests that introducing additional content in mobile applications intended to improve the visitor experience can harm that experience without careful consideration of the tacit training and learning effects when combining content in the gallery and in the application.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2015
EventSEAHA Conference - London, UK United Kingdom
Duration: 14 Jul 201515 Jul 2015


ConferenceSEAHA Conference
Country/TerritoryUK United Kingdom


Dive into the research topics of 'Transfer of learning between screen-based and gallery-based content: an initial study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this