Abstract painters express themselves through their art leaving the viewer to interpret the work however they want. In many ways, art is more about the viewer’s experience rather than actual art itself. Artist’s intentions are not really what’s important.
Communication design is completely the opposite. It is the designer’s role to develop the relationship between viewer and visual. The role entails understanding the audience psychology and how the design elements affect mood. Font type is a powerful element. Properly used it provokes feelings and emotions on a conscious and subconscious level.
Recently, an Australian university has taken communication design one step further and developed a font fundamentally different from all other fonts ever created. A team of experts from the RMIT’s Behavioural Business Lab has collaborated with experts in typography and psychology to create Sans Forgetica.
Researchers and academics from different disciplines came together to develop, design, and test the new font. Chair of the RMIT Behavioural Business Lab and behavioural economist, Dr. Jo Peryman, said it was a terrific tool for students studying for exams. “We believe this is the first time that specific principles of design theory have been combined with specific principles of psychology theory in order to create a font.”
Sans Forgetica was developed using the principle called ‘desirable difficulty’, obstruction is added to the learning process. It requires more effort to read, leading to better memory retention to promote deeper cognitive processing. With everyday familiar fonts readers often glance over text and do not retain traces in the memory, but with Sans Forgetica it has been claimed there has been a sweet spot created with just enough obstruction to create memory retention.
Over 400 students participated in a laboratory and online experiment conducted by RMIT where a range of fonts was tested to determine which led to the best memory retention.
The font, Sans Forgetica broke just enough design principles without becoming illegible and showed clear memory retention results.The font has received critical acclaim for its innovation winning the prestigious Good Design Award 2020 for Best in Class in Communication Design.
Accolades aside it’s still in its infancy, RMIT has made an ongoing commitment to studying the ongoing effects of the font. Coverite will be watching with baited breathe, using these types of elements in our school designs is becoming more prevalent as we move into the future. Both design and construction are where our passion lies, our projects are more than just a building it’s a place to feel comfortable, creative and activate learning.
Coverite Projects – Discover. Design. Deliver.
Specialising in the design and construction of inspiring environments for education.
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