“Does the appearance of different books affect the appeal?” By Sophie Hadden My Project Open University is doing a research project about young researchers and their app ‘Our Story’. We were all selected to participate in this project and come up with our own. There are three different types of research, and our type of research is called ‘Social Science Research’. This is when we find out about the opinions of people in our community. My Method To collect my data, I decided to do: Questionnaires Interviews Observations Photographs Questionnaire Questions/Statements 1)Which of the following book covers do you prefer? 2)What appeals to you when you pick up a book? 3)Books are always more appealing when they are colourful. 4)Do you think children’s books are more colourful than adult books to catch their attention? 5)Do you think this is effective? 6)I would be more likely to read a book with a picture of a film star on the cover. 7)My choice of novel is influenced more by the cover than the actual novel. 8)What is your favourite book cover and why? Questionnaire Data Analysis Girls: These questions had obvious answers. Question 1: Which of the following book covers do you prefer? Closed questions: questions that have definite answers that don’t extend. Question 3: Books are always appealing when they are colourful. Illustration Photograph Question 2: What appeals to you when you pick up a book? Agree Neither agree nor disagree Book Descriptions Cover Design Likert scale: a statement that can be answered with either strongly/agree, neither agree nor disagree or disagree/strongly. Questionnaire Data Analysis Question 7, however, was a very varied argument. My choice of novel is influenced more by the cover than the actual novel, statement number 7, caused a lot of different opinions to rise. This meant that question 7’s data didn’t have a definite answer. Girls: Question 7 Agree Likert! Neither agree nor disagree Disagree Strongly Disagree Questionnaire Data Analysis 2 Boys: These questions had obvious answers too. Question 1: Which of the following book covers do you prefer? Illustration Question 3: Books are always more appealing when they are colourful. Photograph Question 2: What appeals to you when you pick up a book? Colour Book Descriptions Cover Design Strongly agree Agree Neither agree nor disagree Questionnaire Data Analysis 2 However, question 7, again, had a lot of varied answers. The question: My choice of a novel is influenced more by the cover than the actual novel. Boys: Question 7 Agree Neither agree nor disagree Disagree Strongly disagree Questionnaire Analysis Conclusion From collecting my data, I now know that…. -Most girls prefer illustrated book covers, however most boys prefer photographic book covers. -Most people are drawn to book descriptions the most. -Most people agree that books are more appealing when they are colourful. -Question 7 had drawn very different opinions forward. 2/5 of the girls thought the book cover influenced their choice of novel, rather than the novel its self. The boys disagreed. My final conclusion finishes on question 8. I found out that most book covers are favored if they are: “effective”, “interesting”, “inspiring”, “clear”, “mysterious” and/ or “colourful”. Interview Questions 1)What do you think about books? 2)Would you prefer a book if it had your favourite celebrity on the cover? Why? 3)What appeals to you when you pick up a book? Why? 4)Do you think it is important for a book to have an appealing cover? Why? 5)Do you think an appealing book cover could help children with their learning? Why? Interview Data Analysis Adult 1 and 2: 1) 1:“Books are relaxing.” 2: “ I like books. I love to read them and totally loose track of time.” 2) 1:“Not particularly. I prefer to relate to the characters.” 2: “ Not really, but I think it would be more marketable.” 3) 1:“The plot. I like crimes, thrillers and love stories best.” 2: “The Story. My favourite is science-fiction, because I love the escapism of it.” 4) 1:“Yes, for some people.” 2: “It depends on the marketing.” 5) 1:“Yes, because they are drawn to the colours and pictures.” 2: “Yes, because it grabs their attention with the cover and then the story.” Interview Analysis Conclusion From the data I have collected from my interviews, I can come to the conclusion that… -Books in general are liked by most people. -Most people wouldn’t be more likely to pick up a book with a celebrity on it than any normal book. -The plot draws most people to a book. -Most people think that it is important for a book to have an appealing cover. -Most people think that appealing covers help children learn. Observations Mrs Doyle kindly helped me with my observations; I wanted to get a list of the top ten most popular books in Lincroft School library, and see their covers, to determine which type of book cover was the most popular. Observation Analysis Conclusion From my observations I found out… - All of the most popular books in Lincroft School library had illustrated covers. - Jacqueline Wilson was the most popular author in Lincroft School library; all of her book covers were illustrated. Photographs Again, Mrs Doyle helped me with my photographs. She showed me different book covers that were for the same novel, but had changed over the years for various reasons. We found quite a few pairs… Skellig- David Almond The Owl Service Alan Garner George’s Marvellous Medicine Roald Dahl The Secret Garden Coram Boy Jamila Gavin Photographic Analysis Conclusion After my photograph analysis, I found out… - Book covers change to improve the appeal. - Book covers can be different depending on who the target audience is. - Successful novels, that have films created based on them, sometimes have book covers with shots from the movie. - Illustrated book covers are typically created before photographic covers. Project Conclusion At the end of this project, I now know the answer to my research question. After collecting, analyzing making conclusions for my data, I can make my final conclusion. The answer to my question is… YES! I can now conclude that the appearance of book covers can affect the appeal greatly. For example, the most popular books taken out in Lincroft School library all had illustrated covers! Thank You!