Lexical influences on eye movements in reading

Barbara J. Juhasz and Alexander Pollatsek

in The Oxford Handbook of Eye Movements

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780199539789
Published online November 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

 Lexical influences on eye movements in reading

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  • Psychology
  • Cognitive Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience


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In this chapter, we review experiments in which people read text (often single sentences) while properties of individual target words were manipulated. These properties include the frequency of a word in the language, as well as its orthographic, phonological, morphological, and semantic properties. We also briefly review contingent display change experiments in which properties of a word seen only in the parafovea are manipulated. The findings from these experiments indicate that many aspects related to the structure of a fixated word influence fixation times on that word. It is thus apparent that lexical processing is having quite an immediate effect on the progress of the eyes through the text. In the concluding section, we describe how these data are consistent with the E-Z Reader model (see also Reichle, Chapter 42 , this volume), which posits that only one word is attended to at a time (although more than one word is often processed on a fixation). We also highlight issues related to lexical processing which are currently not addressed by models of eye movements in reading.

Keywords: parafovea; eye movements; reading; E-Z Reader model; lexical processing

Article.  14998 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Cognitive Psychology ; Cognitive Neuroscience

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