The effect of knowledge-of-external-representations upon performance and representational choice in a database query task

Beate Grawemeyer, Richard Cox

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


This study examined the representation selection preference patterns of participants in a database query task. In the database task, participants were provided with a choice of information-equivalent data representations and chose one of them to use in answering database queries. A range of database tasks were posed to participants - some required the identification of unique entities, some required the detection of clusters of similar entities, and some involved the qualitative comparison of values, etc. Participants were divided, post hoc, into two groups on the basis of a pre-experimental task (card sort) designed to assess 'knowledge of external representations' (KER). Results showed that low and high KER groups differed most in terms of representation selection on cluster type database query tasks. Participants in the low group tended to change from more 'graphical' representations such as scatterplots to less complex representations (like bar charts or tables) from early to late trials. In contrast, high KER participants were able to successfully use a wider range of ER types. They also selected more 'appropriate' ERs (ie. ones that the diagrammatic reasoning literature predicts to be well-matched to the task).

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDiagrammatic Representation and Inference
Subtitle of host publicationThird International Conference, Diagrams 2004, Cambridge, UK, March 22-24, 2004. Proceedings
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-540-25931-2
ISBN (Print)978-3-540-21268-3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2004
Externally publishedYes
EventThird International Conference, Diagrams 2004 - Cambridge, United Kingdom
Duration: 22 Mar 200424 Mar 2004

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence (Subseries of Lecture Notes in Computer Science)
PublisherSpringer Verlag
ISSN (Print)0302-9743


ConferenceThird International Conference, Diagrams 2004
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Computer Science(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'The effect of knowledge-of-external-representations upon performance and representational choice in a database query task'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this