NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ945338
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Sep
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0278-7393
The Relative Position Priming Effect Depends on Whether Letters Are Vowels or Consonants
Dunabeitia, Jon Andoni; Carreiras, Manuel
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, v37 n5 p1143-1163 Sep 2011
The relative position priming effect is a type of subset priming in which target word recognition is facilitated as a consequence of priming the word with some of its letters, maintaining their relative position (e.g., "csn" as a prime for "casino"). Five experiments were conducted to test whether vowel-only and consonant-only subset primes contribute equally to this effect. Experiment 1 revealed that this subset priming effect emerged when primes were composed exclusively of consonants, compared with vowel-only primes ("csn-casino" vs. "aia-animal"). Experiment 2 tested the impact of letter frequency in this asymmetry. Subset priming effects were obtained for both high- and low-frequency consonants but not for vowels, which rules out a letter frequency explanation. Experiment 3 tested the role of phonology and its contribution to the priming effects observed, by decreasing the prime duration. The results showed virtually the same effects as in the previous experiments. Finally, Experiments 4 and 5 explored the influence of repeated letters in the primes on the magnitude of the priming effects obtained for consonant and vowel subset primes ("iuo-dibujo" and "aea-madera" vs. "mgn-imagen" and "rtr-frutero"). Again, the results confirmed the priming asymmetry. We propose that a functional distinction between consonants and vowels, mainly based on the lexical constraints imposed by each of these types of letters, might provide an explanation for the whole set of results. (Contains 1 figure, 5 tables, and 2 footnotes.)
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Spain