Phonological Recoding in Reading for Meaning by Adults and Children

Veronika Coltheart*, Veronica Laxon, Mary Rickard, Caroline Elton

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Citations (Scopus)


Phonological recoding in reading has been studied by requiring adults or children to judge whether printed sentences are correct or not. When some sentences are orthographically unacceptable but phonologically acceptable (e.g., The girl through the ball), both children and adults make abnormally many false positives with such sentences. It is unclear whether the phonological recoding that produces this effect is attributable to assembled (nonlexical) or addressed (lexical) phonology. Two types of phonologically acceptable but orthographically unacceptable sentences were devised: Those in which the crucial item ("through" in the above example) was an irregular word (so that its phonology could only be obtained lexically), and those in which the crucial item was a homophonic nonword (so that its phonology could only be obtained by assembled phonology). Both types of sentence produced significantly high false-positive rates for adult readers and children, indicating the use of assembled and addressed phonology during sentence reading.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)387-397
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1988
Externally publishedYes


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