Vacc, N. N. (1987). Word processor versus handwriting: A comparative study of writing samples produced by mildly mentally handicapped students . Exceptional Children , 54 (2), 156–165. https://doi.org/10.1177/001440298705400209
Vacc, N. N. (1987). Word processor versus handwriting: A comparative study of writing samples produced by mildly mentally handicapped students. Exceptional Children, 54(2), 156–165. https://doi.org/10.1177/001440298705400209
Students composed letters by-hand and with the word processing program Wordstar on an Osborne microcomputer. Students had 45 minutes per letter writing session.
Participants included one white and three black male students in eighth grade, certified as mildly mentally handicapped (MMH, with WISC-R full scale score of 72). All participants had been enrolled in a special education program for at least 2 years and had completed a one-semester course in typing. The mean age was 15 years, 1 month.
Several dependent variables were measured: time to compose the letter, number of revisions made, composition (letter) length, words per minute (the number of words in the letter divided by the time needed to complete that letter), quality of each letter using a holistic guide, and effect sizes for each dependent variable.
Significant differences existed between the two treatment modes for all dependent variables except quality. All four participants spent significantly more time completing letters, wrote substantially longer letters, and undertook a greater amount of revising when composing letters on the microcomputer word processor. All participants wrote more words per minute when completing handwritten letters and no differences were found in the quality of letter between the writing mode. Time to complete a letter was positively correlated with the total number of revisions made per letter and the length of letter.