From Signs to Minds: Spatial Information Design and Mental Maps
This study examines how information design on road signs influences spatial learning. Participants viewed a sequence of signs as if travelling by car through a fictional environment, making turn choices according to assigned goals, and then completed a mapping task. After a second sign viewing, this time without turn decisions, participants repeated the mapping task. For the first mapping task, participants who viewed signs with spatial information presented cartographically produced more topologically-accurate maps than those viewing conventional signs. These differences faded after the second sign viewing. Our results suggest that guide signs with maps can facilitate incidental learning of spatial configuration.