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Foveal processing and word skipping during reading

By Denis Drieghe


An eyetracking experiment is reported examining the assumption that a word is skipped during sentence reading because parafoveal processing during preceding fixations has reached an advanced level in recognizing that word. Word n was presented with reduced contrast, with case alternation, or normally. Reingold and Rayner (2006) reported that, in comparison to the normal condition, reduced contrast increased viewing times on word n but not on word n+ 1, whereas case alternation increased viewing times on both words. These patterns were reflected in the fixation times of the present experiment, but a striking dissociation was observed in the skipping of word n+ 1: The reduced contrast of word n decreased skipping of word n+ 1, whereas case alternation did not. Apart from the amount of parafoveal processing, the decision to skip word n+ 1 is also influenced by the ease of processing word n: Difficulties in processing word n lead to a more conservative strategy in the decision to skip word n+ 1. <br/

Topics: BF
Year: 2008
OAI identifier: oai:eprints.soton.ac.uk:144741
Provided by: e-Prints Soton

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