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ERIC Number: EJ1137556
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Apr
Pages: 27
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0364-0213
Abstract Conceptual Feature Ratings Predict Gaze within Written Word Arrays: Evidence from a Visual Wor(l)d Paradigm
Primativo, Silvia; Reilly, Jamie; Crutch, Sebastian J
Cognitive Science, v41 n3 p659-685 Apr 2017
The Abstract Conceptual Feature (ACF) framework predicts that word meaning is represented within a high-dimensional semantic space bounded by weighted contributions of perceptual, affective, and encyclopedic information. The ACF, like latent semantic analysis, is amenable to distance metrics between any two words. We applied predictions of the ACF framework to abstract words using eyetracking via an adaptation of the classical "visual word paradigm" (VWP). Healthy adults (n = 20) selected the lexical item most related to a probe word in a 4-item written word array comprising the target and three distractors. The relation between the probe and each of the four words was determined using the semantic distance metrics derived from ACF ratings. Eye movement data indicated that the word that was most semantically related to the probe received more and longer fixations relative to distractors. Importantly, in sets where participants did not provide an overt behavioral response, the fixation rates were nonetheless significantly higher for targets than distractors, closely resembling trials where an expected response was given. Furthermore, ACF ratings which are based on individual words predicted eye fixation metrics of probe-target similarity at least as well as latent semantic analysis ratings which are based on word co-occurrence. The results provide further validation of Euclidean distance metrics derived from ACF ratings as a measure of one facet of the semantic relatedness of abstract words and suggest that they represent a reasonable approximation of the organization of abstract conceptual space. The data are also compatible with the broad notion that multiple sources of information (not restricted to sensorimotor and emotion information) shape the organization of abstract concepts. While the adapted "VWP" is potentially a more metacognitive task than the classical visual world paradigm, we argue that it offers potential utility for studying abstract word comprehension.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A