An analysis of the time course of lexical processing during reading

Heather Sheridan*, Erik D. Reichle

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Reingold, Reichle, Glaholt, and Sheridan (2012) reported a gaze-contingent eye-movement experiment in which survival-curve analyses were used to examine the effects of word frequency, the availability of parafoveal preview, and initial fixation location on the time course of lexical processing. The key results of these analyses suggest that lexical processing begins very rapidly (after approximately 120 ms) and is supported by substantial parafoveal processing (more than 100 ms). Because it is not immediately obvious that these results are congruent with the theoretical assumption that words are processed and identified in a strictly serial manner, we attempted to simulate the experiment using the E-Z Reader model of eye-movement control (Reichle, 2011). These simulations were largely consistent with the empirical results, suggesting that parafoveal processing does play an important functional role by allowing lexical processing to occur rapidly enough to mediate direct control over when the eyes move during reading.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)522-553
Number of pages32
JournalCognitive Science
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • reading
  • attention
  • computational modeling
  • distributional analyses
  • eye movements
  • E-Z Reader
  • lexical processing
  • time course


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