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Reading spaced and unspaced Chinese text: evidence from eye movements

Reading spaced and unspaced Chinese text: evidence from eye movements
Reading spaced and unspaced Chinese text: evidence from eye movements
Native Chinese readers' eye movements were monitored as they read text that did or did not demark word boundary information. In Experiment 1, sentences had 4 types of spacing: normal unspaced text, text with spaces between words, text with spaces between characters that yielded nonwords, and finally text with spaces between every character. The authors investigated whether the introduction of spaces into unspaced Chinese text facilitates reading and whether the word or, alternatively, the character is a unit of information that is of primary importance in Chinese reading. Global and local measures indicated that sentences with unfamiliar word spaced format were as easy to read as visually familiar unspaced text. Nonword spacing and a space between every character produced longer reading times. In Experiment 2, highlighting was used to create analogous conditions: normal Chinese text, highlighting that marked words, highlighting that yielded nonwords, and highlighting that marked each character. The data from both experiments clearly indicated that words, and not individual characters, are the unit of primary importance in Chinese reading.
chinese reading, spaced and unspaced text, eye movements
0096-1523
1277-1287
Bai, Xuejun
721d6175-84ba-435e-acfd-3d53ad941edd
Yan, Guoli
e893614c-2061-4933-a295-8aa5f7f4f4b9
Liversedge, Simon P.
3ebda3f3-d930-4f89-85d5-5654d8fe7dee
Zang, Chuanli
558104ed-4ec2-48f7-b723-8bd025399803
Rayner, Keith
15f4ff90-d631-457b-a055-3944b702ea27
Bai, Xuejun
721d6175-84ba-435e-acfd-3d53ad941edd
Yan, Guoli
e893614c-2061-4933-a295-8aa5f7f4f4b9
Liversedge, Simon P.
3ebda3f3-d930-4f89-85d5-5654d8fe7dee
Zang, Chuanli
558104ed-4ec2-48f7-b723-8bd025399803
Rayner, Keith
15f4ff90-d631-457b-a055-3944b702ea27

Bai, Xuejun, Yan, Guoli, Liversedge, Simon P., Zang, Chuanli and Rayner, Keith (2008) Reading spaced and unspaced Chinese text: evidence from eye movements. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 34 (5), 1277-1287. (doi:10.1037/0096-1523.34.5.1277). (PMID:18823210)

Record type: Article

Abstract

Native Chinese readers' eye movements were monitored as they read text that did or did not demark word boundary information. In Experiment 1, sentences had 4 types of spacing: normal unspaced text, text with spaces between words, text with spaces between characters that yielded nonwords, and finally text with spaces between every character. The authors investigated whether the introduction of spaces into unspaced Chinese text facilitates reading and whether the word or, alternatively, the character is a unit of information that is of primary importance in Chinese reading. Global and local measures indicated that sentences with unfamiliar word spaced format were as easy to read as visually familiar unspaced text. Nonword spacing and a space between every character produced longer reading times. In Experiment 2, highlighting was used to create analogous conditions: normal Chinese text, highlighting that marked words, highlighting that yielded nonwords, and highlighting that marked each character. The data from both experiments clearly indicated that words, and not individual characters, are the unit of primary importance in Chinese reading.

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More information

Published date: October 2008
Keywords: chinese reading, spaced and unspaced text, eye movements
Organisations: Cognition

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 52574
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/52574
ISSN: 0096-1523
PURE UUID: ac25fc89-b198-4b57-8c34-5eec4a6145c8

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 10 Jul 2008
Last modified: 13 Mar 2019 20:42

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