ERIC Number: ED288184
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987-Nov
Reference Count: 0
Limited Role of Contextual Information in Adult Word Recognition. Technical Report No. 411.
Durgunoglu, Aydin Y.
Recognizing a word in a meaningful text involves processes that combine information from many different sources, and both bottom-up processes (such as feature extraction and letter recognition) and top-down processes (contextual information) are thought to interact when skilled readers recognize words. Two similar experiments investigated word recognition latencies of adult readers who read single words that were manipulated by repetition and/or degradation, and the effects of context were observed. Subjects for the first experiment were 40 introductory psychology students, while those for the second experiment were 60 different students. Findings indicated that repeated words were recognized faster than nonrepeated words, but were not any less affected by semantic context. The two degradation manipulations (inserting asterisks between a word's letters and masking a word) slowed word recognition as compared to a clear presentation. However, only the masking manipulation produced contextual inhibition, and the magnitude of context effects did not always vary monotonically with the word recognition latencies in the neutral condition. A version of the interactive-compensatory model of skilled reading is the most compatible explanation of the results of these experiments, because that model contends that slowed word recognition is not always accompanied by contextual compensation and that adult readers depend on their decoding processes when the processes are slowed, unless the data are inadequate for such analysis. (SKC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Child Health and Human Development (NIH), Bethesda, MD.
Authoring Institution: Illinois Univ., Urbana. Center for the Study of Reading.
Note: Paper based on doctoral dissertation, Purdue University. Portions of this research were presented at meetings of the Midwestern Psychological Association (Chicago, IL, May 1987). Funding also provided by a grant from Purdue Research Foundation.