Proficient readers typically fixate near the center of a word, with a slight bias towards word onset. We explore a novel account of this phenomenon based on combining information-theory with perceptual constraints in a connectionist model of visual word recognition. This account posits that the amount of information-content available for word identification varies across fixation locations and across languages. These differences contribute to the overall fixation location bias in different languages, make the novel prediction that certain words are more readily identified when fixating at an atypical fixation location, and predict specific cross-linguistic differences. We tested these predictions across several simulations in English and Hebrew, and in a behavioral experiment. The results confirmed that the bias to fixate closer to word onset aligns with reducing uncertainty in the visual signal, that some words are more readily identified at atypical fixation locations, and that these effects vary across languages.
|Original language||American English|
|Title of host publication||Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society|
|Subtitle of host publication||Creativity + Cognition + Computation, CogSci 2019|
|Publisher||The Cognitive Science Society|
|Number of pages||7|
|ISBN (Electronic)||0991196775, 9780991196777|
|State||Published - 2019|
|Event||41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society: Creativity + Cognition + Computation, CogSci 2019 - Montreal, Canada|
Duration: 24 Jul 2019 → 27 Jul 2019
|Name||Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society: Creativity + Cognition + Computation, CogSci 2019|
|Conference||41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society: Creativity + Cognition + Computation, CogSci 2019|
|Period||24/07/19 → 27/07/19|
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This project was funded by the ERC (ERC-2015-AdG-692502 to RF) and NSERC (DG-502584 to BCA).
© Cognitive Science Society: Creativity + Cognition + Computation, CogSci 2019.All rights reserved.
- computational modelling
- fixation location
- information theory
- visual word recognition