Developing and Testing Proficiency Models of Text–Picture Integration

Teaching materials used in many subjects at lower secondary level involve texts containing instructional pictures. In order to develop appropriate knowledge structures, learners have to integrate textual and graphical information. Analogous to skill development in other domains, the development of students’ ability to integrate textual and graphical information is likely to be considerably influenced by the instruction their teachers provide. Models of the structure and development of these skills at the student level can thus be set in relation to corresponding models of content knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge, and especially diagnostic competence at the teacher level.

This study aims to test proficiency models of text–picture integration at the student and teacher levels. At the student level, we investigate the structural features characterizing text–picture integration skills and examine the influence of school type and age on proficiency levels. At the teacher level, we investigate the content knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge that teachers of different subjects can draw on to enhance their students’ proficiency and the extent to which this knowledge is dependent on their training and classroom experience. For the purposes of discriminative construct validation, these proficiency models of text–picture integration at the student and teacher level will be compared and contrasted with models of reading proficiency.

The project is being conducted in collaboration with the University of Koblenz-Landau (Prof. Dr. W. Schnotz, Dr. H. Horz) and is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) as a project associated with the priority program on proficiency models for assessing individual learning outcomes and monitoring educational processes (“Kompetenzmodelle zur Erfassung individueller Lernergebnisse und zur Bilanzierung von Bildungsprozessen”).


Nele McElvany
Jürgen Baumert
Axinja Hachfeld
Sascha Schroeder

Cooperation Partner:
Wolfgang Schnotz
Holger Horz
Mark Ullrich