Preference for and understanding of graphs presenting health risk information. The role of age, health literacy, numeracy and graph literacy

J.C.M. van Weert*, M.C. Alblas, L. van Dijk, J. Jansen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

Objective: To investigate 1) younger (< 65) and older (>= 65) adults' preference for and understanding of graph formats presenting risk information, and 2) the contribution of age, health literacy, numeracy and graph literacy in understanding information.Materials and methods: To assess preferences, participants (n = 219 < 65 and n = 227 >= 65) were exposed to a storyboard presenting six types of graphs. Understanding (verbatim and gist knowledge) was assessed in an experiment using a 6 (graphs: clock, bar, sparkplug, table, pie vs pictograph) by 2 (age: younger [<65] vs older [>= 65]) between-subjects design.Results: Most participants preferred clock, pie or bar chart. Pie was not well understood by both younger and older people, and clock not by older people. Bar was fairly well understood in both groups. Table yielded high knowledge scores, particularly in the older group. Lower age, higher numeracy and higher graph literacy contributed to higher verbatim knowledge scores. Higher health literacy and graph literacy were associated with higher gist knowledge.Discussion and conclusion: Although not the preferred format, tables are best understood by older adults.Practice implications: Graph literacy skills are essential for both verbatim and gist understanding, and are important to take into account when developing risk information. (C) 2020 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-117
Number of pages9
JournalPatient Education and Counseling
Volume104
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021

Keywords

  • aging
  • communication
  • comprehension
  • decision aids
  • display format
  • graph formats
  • graph literacy
  • health literacy
  • judgments
  • lower education
  • numeracy
  • older-adults
  • perception
  • quantitative information
  • risk communication
  • shared decision-making
  • visual aids
  • Health literacy
  • Risk communication
  • COMPREHENSION
  • Graph literacy
  • QUANTITATIVE INFORMATION
  • VISUAL AIDS
  • Aging
  • Decision aids
  • JUDGMENTS
  • SHARED DECISION-MAKING
  • OLDER-ADULTS
  • Graph formats
  • PERCEPTION
  • DISPLAY FORMAT
  • LOWER EDUCATION
  • Numeracy
  • COMMUNICATION

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