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Research shows display size makes a difference for students

Radius Global Market Research have published results of research on the readability of content in classrooms.

The results of the research were concerning, finding that more than 50 percent of students in each country surveyed had difficulty reading from a 70 inch screen. More than half of students made at least one mistake when writing information down from a 70 inch screen.

Students were shown basic content- a simple text table, Excel spreadsheet and PowerPoint schematic- then asked to find data (a word, short phrase, or number) ad copy it down. Size of text varied from large headlines to smaller details.

The 4/6/8 Rule

The research findings support the 4/6/8 rule, the idea that students should be within certain distances of a screen for different types of viewing.

The differences in the types of viewings are:

Analytical Viewing – Viewers are fully engaged with the content and can make critical decisions by the ability to analyse details within the displayed image

Basic Viewing – Viewers are actively engaged with the content and can make basic decisions from the displayed image

Passive Viewing – Viewers are passively engaged with the content and able to recognize what the images are on a screen and understand the general intent of the displayed image

Audio visual professionals recommend students sit within 4 metres of a screen for analytical viewing, within 6 for basic viewing, and within 8 metres for passive viewing.

58% of students can’t read off a 70 inch screen

The research found 58% of students couldn’t content on a 70 inch screen whilst sitting in an average sized classroom.

The research showed a comparison of how many students sit within the analytical viewing range based on screen size. 6 times as many students were in the analytical viewing range of a 100 inch screen compared to a 65 inch screen.

The result was calculated by multiplying the height of the screen by 4 for analytical viewing, by 6 for basic viewing, and by 8 for passive viewing.

Big screens make a bigger difference

As well as increasing the number of students in the analytical viewing range, every student sits within the passive viewing range of a 100 inch screen.

Epson highlighted that a 100 inch screen is 4 times larger than a 50 inch screen in terms of surface area, when screen size is measured diagonally.

Viewing angles matter

Viewing angles are also much wider on a projector than a traditional TV screen. This comes from looking at projected light on a matte fabric projector screen over the LCD display of a TV screen. This makes projectors more inclusive for classrooms as students can watch the screen from more angles.


Contact a DIB Audio Visual Solutions Consultant today if you want to upgrade your classroom setup. We can help you whether you want one projector or a whole range for a sales team or block of classes.

Phone (03) 9457-4800 or contact us.