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Perceptual span depends on font size during the reading of chinese sentences

  • The present study explored the perceptual span (i.e., the physical extent of an area from which useful visual information is extracted during a single fixation) during the reading of Chinese sentences in 2 experiments. In Experiment 1, we tested whether the rightward span can go beyond 3 characters when visually similar masks were used. Results showed that Chinese readers needed at least 4 characters to the right of fixation to maintain a normal reading behavior when visually similar masks were used and when characters were displayed in small fonts, indicating that the span is dynamically influenced by masking materials. In Experiments 2 and 3, we asked whether the perceptual span varies as a function of font size in spaced (German) and unspaced (Chinese) scripts. Results clearly suggest perceptual span depends on font size in Chinese, but we failed to find such evidence for German. We propose that the perceptual span in Chinese is flexible; it is strongly constrained by its language-specific properties such as high informationThe present study explored the perceptual span (i.e., the physical extent of an area from which useful visual information is extracted during a single fixation) during the reading of Chinese sentences in 2 experiments. In Experiment 1, we tested whether the rightward span can go beyond 3 characters when visually similar masks were used. Results showed that Chinese readers needed at least 4 characters to the right of fixation to maintain a normal reading behavior when visually similar masks were used and when characters were displayed in small fonts, indicating that the span is dynamically influenced by masking materials. In Experiments 2 and 3, we asked whether the perceptual span varies as a function of font size in spaced (German) and unspaced (Chinese) scripts. Results clearly suggest perceptual span depends on font size in Chinese, but we failed to find such evidence for German. We propose that the perceptual span in Chinese is flexible; it is strongly constrained by its language-specific properties such as high information density and lack of word spacing. Implications for saccade-target selection during the reading of Chinese sentences are discussed.show moreshow less

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Metadaten
Author:Ming YanORCiDGND, Wei Zhou, Hua Shu, Reinhold KlieglORCiDGND
DOI:https://doi.org/10.1037/a0038097
ISSN:0278-7393 (print)
ISSN:1939-1285 (online)
Pubmed Id:http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=25329081
Parent Title (English):Journal of experimental psychology : Learning, memory, and cognition
Publisher:American Psychological Association
Place of publication:Washington
Document Type:Article
Language:English
Year of first Publication:2015
Year of Completion:2015
Release Date:2017/03/27
Tag:Chinese reading; eye movements; parafoveal processing; perceptual span
Volume:41
Issue:1
Pagenumber:11
First Page:209
Last Page:219
Funder:Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft [KL 955/18]
Organizational units:Humanwissenschaftliche Fakultät / Institut für Psychologie
Peer Review:Referiert