The Battle of the Screens: Unraveling Attention Allocation and Memory Effects When Multiscreening

Claire M. Segijn, Hilde A.M. Voorveld, Lisa Vandeberg, Edith G. Smit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Multiscreening, the simultaneous usage of multiple screens, is a relatively understudied phenomenon that may have a large impact on media effects. First, we explored people's viewing behavior while multiscreening by means of an eye-tracker. Second, we examined people's reporting of attention, by comparing eye-tracker and self-reported attention measures. Third, we assessed the effects of multiscreening on people's memory, by comparing people's memory for editorial and advertising content when multiscreening (television–tablet) versus single screening. The results of the experiment (N = 177) show that (a) people switched between screens 2.5 times per minute, (b) people were capable of reporting their own attention, and (c) multiscreeners remembered content just as well as single screeners, when they devoted sufficient attention to the content.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)295-314
Number of pages20
JournalHuman Communication Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 International Communication Association


  • Eye-Tracking
  • Memory
  • Multiscreening
  • Viewing Behavior
  • Visual Attention


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